July 19, 2019,

A beginning is what we all had. We were there but most likely didn’t know it at the time. At least not fully.

An ending is what we will all earn. Deserved or not. We can postpone it, but we know it is eventually coming.

It is what we do in between before the glass fits snugly against the sill that matters.

Especially when important windows are ever so slightly opened.

Our windows.

Our opportunity.

Our once in a lifetime chance.

When a window closes, it fits snugly against the sill. A window sill is the bottom piece of trim, or the ledge at the bottom of the window. They are essential in keeping out rain and making windows more energy efficient.

Once that window meets the sill, it is closed.

They are very powerful in preventing re-entry.

Few pathways make us think more about closing windows than sports entertainment, loved the world over, which is typically for the young.

Very young.

Have your window close on you and there will be someone younger to take your place.

A window of opportunity is a short, and often fleeting, time period during which a rare and incredible opportunity opens up to you that may never be repeated again.

Ever.

It is important to take action.

Now.

We saw this play out in a fascinating inside look at a global female sports venue that made it to television. This particular Reality Television Series made a point about the young women involved and recognizing their open window before it closes.

fciwomenswrestling.com femcompetitor.com, LA Clippers NBA.com photo credit

L.A. Clippers Dance Squad is an American reality television series that premiered on the E! cable network.

The eight-episode one-hour series features seven members of a dance team for the Los Angeles Clippers National Basketball Association (NBA) professional basketball team. The show follows the professional and personal lives of the team by showing “what it really takes to make it to the floor of the Staples Center in Los Angeles and dance for basketball fans while representing a high-profile, global brand.”

The cast includes Hannah Cormier, Kellie Janeski, Blair Kim, Athena Perample, Savanna Read, Natalie Tenerelli, and Candace Washington.

E entertainment entices, “E!’s newest show provides a look into the lives of the elite dancers who make up the Clippers Spirit dance team and represent the global Los Angeles Clippers brand. The show offers a glimpse at everything from the audition process to rehearsals to the dedication it takes to stay on top of their game.”

Intriguing. Sounds like it was written last week but it wasn’t.

That was pronounced by E on March 1, 2016.

How quickly times passes. Already over three years ago.

They were all young, extremely talented, incredibly bright and absolutely beautiful.

All of them.

That in part is why they all made it past the first round.

Elite as they all were, there was someone that stood out among the crowd. In a good way and bad.

When they were picking the finalists, she was the first one chosen.

Yes, theeee first.

First the good shined through.

Athena Perample was an incredible dancer and performer.

fciwomenswrestling.com femcompetitor.com, Athena photo via Record-Eagle.com

The best.

She impressed the leadership so much that as a rookie she was named co-captain. How did the other girls feel about that, especially some who were three year veterans?

How do you think?

How would you feel about it?

So there were only a few ways for Athena to win the team over and that was to set an example for them to follow and humble herself to blend in with the group.

She did neither.

With Athena’s personality you could kind of see what was coming. She didn’t seem to care about others, instead of bonding with the group she did her own thing and she was constantly causing that frequently used Hollywood Reality TV series word, “DRAMA”.

The management could probably live with that but when the team made a special trip to China and she shows up late to rehearsal, doesn’t follow hallway entry instructions and forgoes an assignment for her personal time in front of the cameras, even the management had enough.

They sent her back home to America.

Then fired her.

The question we had while watching it was, how often does a new girl get to break in to be on the Los Angeles Clippers Dance Squad?

Didn’t Athena understand that an important life window had opened up for her?

Didn’t she?

Apparently not. She was given plenty of chances but instead of listening to council she chose to make excuses and even consider herself a victim. She didn’t see the problems (yes plural) as being caused by her.

Too bad.

“The highest levels of performance come to people who are centered, intuitive, creative, and reflective – people who know to see a problem as an opportunity.”… Deepak Chopra

The strange thing is, for those of us who are artistic, different and didn’t always fit into the group, we could relate to and sympathize with her.

More important, since we have personally experienced life altering experiences where critical widows closed snugly against the sill for us, never to be opened again, we could feel the pain, like a slow moving tidal wave that was coming her way.

It was clear that she eventually felt it too.

After she was off the team, she still wanted to associate with them. She even agreed to participate in their suggested Pity Party which was in reality a, You Got What You Deserved party. Now are you finally going to admit that you were a jerk?

Athena asked them to leave. Not very politely, but then again, that was never her way.

She would later show up to another celebration party and wasn’t well-received. What she didn’t seem to understand was the day that she was fired, she was no longer a part of the group.

Her participation with the Clippers may as well have been ten years ago.

Now she seems to crave being a part of them because she now understands what was lost.

Ironically a group she originally didn’t seem to want to spend a lot of time with.

This is the type of opportunity that thousands of beautiful dancers want, few qualify for and even fewer attain.

Athena attained it.

Earned it.

Then lost it.

On her own.

Her window closed. She eventually was extremely sad.

We were sad for her. And for us. We get it.

On the other hand we have climbed through closing windows and achieved important dreams, like having our charge finish as California’s number one ranked senior in the brutally competitive Men’s Track and Field 100 meter event where the fastest races horses fly around the track.

California.

The most populated state in America.

Yes, we finished number one.

It took us six years but we did it. We climbed through our swiftly closing window.

Now we get to re-live that accomplishment over and over. Only ten people in an entire decade are a part of that elite fraternity.

We are one of them.

As you get older and you keep losing certain enjoyments of your life due to loss of health, family deaths and aging limitations, climbing through that window when it was open, when you were at your peak, becomes so important.

Life tends to give you second chances, but not the ones reserved for the very young. For Athena most likely in another industry.

Hopefully the next time she understands the connection between the open window, the sill and the swiftly closing space in between.

We’re rooting for her.

~ ~ ~

https://www.diynetwork.com/how-to/rooms-and-spaces/doors-and-windows/window-sills-and-trim

https://www.eonline.com/shows/la_clippers_dance_squad/news/738050/meet-the-clippers-spirit-dance-squad

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.A._Clippers_Dance_Squad

https://www.investopedia.com/terms/w/window-of-opportunity.asp

https://twitter.com/hannahcormier_