I like ESPN. I like Sports Center. It is one of the best things to happen – both to folks with ADD – like me – and folks who love sports. I can catch-all the most important moments, know the score of any game, and all within just a few minutes. Its brilliant.
This morning I caught the perfect highlight – but it was not the normal highlight. It was a “top ten,”but not Chris Berman’s. It was Barbara Walter’s Ten Most Fascinating people of 2011. Derek Jeter was one of ten.
Now – I’m a Yankee Fan – always have been – but I am objective. I wouldn’t just throw this out on a blog – just because he is a Yankee. I wouldn’t do that. But – the interview was worth listening to because of what Jeter said about his parents.
At one point in the interview Jeter talked about the fact that he and his sister signed a contract with their parents. The contract outlined what was expected of them in regards to curfew, grades, and behavior. He pointed out that he didn’t really break that contract – or at least he didn’t get caught – because “I never really wanted to disappoint my parents. I still have that mind-set where I don’t want to disappoint people, especially them. I didn’t get in too much trouble — or, I should say, I didn’t get caught.”
I think this is a big deal and something that is awesome. It isn’t often that famous folks point to the respect that they have for their parents as a driving reason for the way that they live. It is important for parents to see this – important for them to realize that what they do actually has a long time impact on their kids. What I think it important is that Jeter’s parents made things clear – they had goals and expectations and Jeter and his sister knew what they were. I think that’s a good idea. We ought to have expectations for our kids – they ought to know them and they ought to have expectations for themselves.
Jeter isn’t perfect and I’m not advocating putting him on a pedestal. I am advocating listening to the interview and allowing that to shape a bit of our understanding of the impact of our parenting. It matters. The expectations we set for ourselves as parents and for our kids matter – and – it has an impact. At least it did for Jeter. That’s a big deal.