I attended my 10-year-old son's school triathlon recently. I was a parent helper and, as such, I volunteered to marshal on the course. I was a marshall for the bicycle leg.
During the course of this duty, I was amazed at the messages being shouted at the beleaguered children from the competitive parents. "Go hard (name)!", "Use your gears (name)!" Really dig it in (name)!" etc.
I was only there to support my son and I didn't care if he came first or one hundred and first. I was quite astounded at how seriously many of these parents took the event. Also, what seemed ironic was that many of the most vocal, competitive parents looked like they would struggle to walk to the TV to change the channel much less compete in a triathlon. Many beer guts abounded as did thunder thighs, huge hips and ballast bums. As the Americans say: "Go figure!"