Taller, brighter, more talented, more compassionate, glittering into cameras and microphones, awarding each other awards for talent and compassion, “great human beings” every one of them – wet-eyed I applaud, and believe. And all of us lose. The public loses because it feels less worthy than it is. We are not heroes. We are hockey players.
We do exciting, sometimes courageous, sometimes ennobling things like heroes do, but no more than anyone else does. Blown up on a TV screen or a page of print, hyped by distance and imagination, we seem more heroic, the scope of our achievement seems grander, but it isn’t, and we’re not. Our cause, our commitment is no different from anyone else’s, the human qualities engendered are the same.
But by creating celebrity and mistaking it for substance, we lose again. – Ken Dryden, The Game
As a huge hockey fan and someone who likes to follow the players who play the game, I think this is important to remember. I think it’s okay to admire someone and look up to them as inspiration for achieving our goals, but that doesn’t mean that hockey players/professional athletes/celebrities shine any brighter or are really any different than the rest of us. We can put them on a pedestal, but they are not immune to the pressure, stress, unhappiness, or depression that anyone else goes through. Things like wealth and celebrity don’t automatically mean that you will be happy or that you’re not allowed to be unhappy. Whether you are an NHL player with a multi-million dollar contract or you work at a minimum wage job, you are just as special in God’s eyes.
Game Plan: Remember that it is not what you do or how much money you make that determines your worth. Celebrities are human beings just like the rest of us and we miss out on seeing how special every single one of us is if we think any differently.