Just Shut Up and Play

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Have you ever noticed that people seem more opinionated today than they were, perhaps, twenty years ago? It’s not that people did not speak their minds back then. It just seems that everyone has an opinion on everything today, and that opinion is often negative and not factual in its substance and inherent value.

It does not take a modern Albert Einstein to realize that, as a society, we are in a bit of a pickle. The ability to think for oneself, form an educated opinion, and communicate an idea clearly to one’s listener and/or readership is almost a dying art or skill.

My father once said to me,

Everyone is an analyst, just SHUT UP and PLAY.

As a long-time player and coach – a person who still plays recreational hockey at 80+ years of age, he has earned the right to say that. What he meant by his statement was that today’s coaches and hockey players have become so analytical and opinionated about the game, that they have taken the fun out of it.

Keep your opinions to yourself…demonstrate your knowledge of the game. Put on a pair of skates, grab a stick, and get on the ice. Show me what you’ve got kid…just shut up and play!

As a person with a university degree in education (Physical Education and Math) and 30+ years of high school teaching experience, 40+ years of coaching experience, and over seventy years of actual playing experience, my father might just know a thing or two about the game of hockey. When my dad talks about hockey – the wise sit up and listen intently.

Let’s get back to this idea of ill-informed opinions and negativity. An opinion can be defined as follows:

  1. a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.
  2. the beliefs or views of a large number or majority of people about a particular thing.
  3. an estimation of the quality or worth of someone or something.

An intelligent person will quickly realize that much of what we read and view on social media, alternative news sites, and even the main street media, is based on opinion. Some of those opinions could be considered well researched and educated opinions based on significant life experience. Many of the opinions, however, are just drivel. Very little factual and knowledgeable information is presented, the opinion(s) could be considered negative and/or derogatory based on questionable value judgements, and the opinion(s) are inappropriately disseminated like wildfire.

So, what can we learn as bloggers from the aforementioned? I would like to suggest the following:

  1. Get your facts straight. This takes hard work. The quality of facts are often interdependent on one’s education and life experience.
  2. Write out of your own experience – young or old, we all have something to contribute to society.
  3. Don’t be afraid to swim against the current. It may be safe to run with the pack and the majority opinion, but where is the fun in that?
  4. If you are going to form an opinion, frame it in a positive light, rather than dwelling amongst the bottom feeders of negativity, discontent, and being derogatory. This does not mean that every post we make is a beacon of light, but rather the tone that we set in our overall blog, positive or negative, is really a reflection of ourselves.

Of course, all that I have said and recommended to you, the reader, is based on my own education and life experience. In the final analysis, it is just another opinion – take it or leave it 🙂

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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Author: arealwookie

Photographer, Writer, Human Rights Advocate, Environmentalist, and Outdoor Sports Enthusiast.