American Ninja Warrior

Sikke Ninjas
So my American Ninja Warrior debut did not get any air time last night.  I guess I could say that only a true ninja would not reveal himself on such a public stage, but truthfully I was a little bummed to have promoted the show, knowing that NBC makes no promise that my run would be televised.
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It’s probably because I spend too much time on social media, or have been too long immersed in a world with TV, that I’ve become convinced that real meaning or value only exists when something I do is made public.  We all crave celebrity or fame at some level right?  But this craving is typically centred on myself and blinds me to others.  It also tends to undermine the value of the reality in experiences like being on Ninja Warrior.

Now even a process of reflection like this, displayed publicly on a blog, tends to circle back in on the “self.” Before this becomes a black hole of introspection, I want to just list real things that I am thankful for out of this Ninja Warrior experience.

I am thankful for:

  1. Students who pushed me to try something new.
  2. Teachers and administrators who encouraged me throughout the process.
  3. A rockstar team who kept the 4th grade rolling while I was out of town.
  4. The relationships that developed between the families in my class and myself over this shared experience.
  5. A renewed sense of camaraderie between teachers at the end of a school year when many of us are feeling tired!
  6. My Canadian (pictured above) and Texan family and friends (Randy Mulder especially) who wore their shirts in solidarity last night because they were not able to make the OKC to watch.
  7. The health to compete.
  8. The opportunity to meet and cheer on 100 different ninjas and be impacted by their incredible stories.
  9. A supportive and loving wife who took time off work to come up and cheer me on, and who the editors of the show made to look like she was cheering for some guy with legendary abs.  At least she tells me that was the editors fault….

For those of you who were not able to and who did not see what happened on TV, thank you for all of your support.  (Oh, and I’ll let you know that I fell on the third rolling log). For those of you who were able to come and experience Ninja Warrior in person, thank you.

What an incredible year.