One of the old sports clichés that I grew tired of by the time I was grown was the one about players that either just then or always “gives a hundred-and-ten percent!”
Having been intensely brainwashed by years of math propaganda, I labored under the delusion that one hundred percent was all of something. Outside of some sort of divine interpolation or intervention, if you came up with “more,” that was proof that what you had before wasn’t “all” of whatever it was that you had.
I suspected these “one-ten-ers” had been sandbagging, making their coaches think they’d been giving a hundred percent when actually it was only ninety-one or so. Then, when it really mattered, they’d dig down deeper and offer up that additional tithe they’d been holding back for just such an occasion as this.
I guess it was partially my tendency to selectively over-literalize at work in my little bit of indignation. Might have been that the bigger part of what really bothered me was that I’d have to find several hundred percent to be able to hang with the athletes at mention. Their talent and effort both vastly exceeded my meager combination.
I don’t think it’s all that rare in life that jealousy and envy masquerade as righteous indignation. Pointing out the faults and inconsistencies of others might be rooted in our own insecurities. It’s certainly more fun to “tell it like it is” when we’re looking somewhere other than in the mirror. All these years of my careful and deliberate practice of judging others really isn’t the sort of preparation I need for that time when I find myself standing before the Throne of Judgment.
I reckon we’re all going to believe in mercy then. A hundred-and-ten percent.