Folks laughed last week when Seattle Seahawks player Marshawn Lynch spent his time at the annual Super Bowl media day answering every reporter’s question with some variation of “I’m just here so I won’t get fined.” Saturday Night Live even parodied the running back’s little bit of performance art in this week’s cold open.
As it turns out, NFL policy mandates that players show up at certain press events. Apparently League rules don’t require that one behaves like a professional.
Undoubtedly, there are some that enjoy seeing Lynch take a dig at what might seem like the NFL’s over-reaching attempts to control athletes’ behaviors. Yet others will find it unconscionable that someone who makes millions a year playing a game can’t find 5 minutes to simply sit down and answer a few questions.
My take is a bit different.
For me, we pull our own version of the “so I won’t get fined” card anytime we merely show up and aren’t ready to do the work.
When we replace “get fined” with “get fired” . . .
. . . . or “get in trouble”
. . . or “”be seen as different”
. . . or “upset my boss”
. . . or the myriad other ways we simply go along to get along.
Woody Allen was wrong when he said “80% of success is showing up.” But we laugh because so often it seems to be true.
I’d like to think we can do better.