Sometimes, as sports fans, we become enamored with the bright lights, big city aspect of being a sports star. We see the money, the adoration, the opportunity, the material advantages and the potential to carry a career on the field into other business opportunities. Oh, and the women. There would seem to be ample opportunity to come into contact with plenty of adoring and friendly women.
As fans, we are led to believe that the life of a star athlete is filled with nothing but frivolity, enjoyment and happiness. The parties, the not worrying about having money to pay all the bills, the long off season with a relatively open schedule. It all seems too good to be true. At least to the fan.
Michael Strahan is here to let us know. The grass isn't greener.
"Let's say one day I came to you and offered you a million dollars to let me take a huge hunting knife and wear down the blade until it was rusty and really dull. Then, when it's really dull and nasty, I would stick it into a pit of burning coals until the blade was white-hot. Finally, I would pull that sucker out of the flames and stab you over and over and over again. Take that blade and stab you in the ankles, your feet and your wrists. Not just stick it in but turn that rusty old knife and twist it when it's sunk deep into your knees or shoulders." And the point of his bloodthirsty scenario? "That is the reality of my NFL," Strahan writes. "Every single year I have somebody sink this awful, dreadful blade into a few parts of my body."
Praise be! It hardly seems worth playing. The pain. The agony. The unfairness of the harsh reality of the big, long term contract NFL player. Life in the NFL, akin to being mercilessly gouged over and over with a rusty, hot and dull dagger. Penetrating your wholesome skin over and over. Until your blood is let and flowing uncontrollably. This sounds like the work of the devil.
If only Michael could enjoy the capricious lifestyle of the lower middle class hourly employee. Maybe if Michael had the joy of punching a time clock. Of having his supervisor monitor his fifteen minute morning coffee break to ensure he didn't take 16 minutes. Maybe if Michael had to make the choice each month of paying his rent on time or paying the power bill on time. Of deciding between purchasing enough to feed his family in generic goods at the store, or splurging and buying the name brand stuff; but not having enough to fill every one's belly. Indeed, that must be the life that would sooth the vicious knife gouging that Michael endures as an NFL multi-millionaire.
Our heart goes out to Michael.
Sometimes, life doesn't seem fair. But remember, Michael, our earthly existence is only a test for our reward. Just think: If you can endure the hell on earth of being an NFL multi-millionaire; what a bountiful paradise awaits you!
Stay righteous, Brother Strahan. We shall pray for you.