What to do when someone we know is battling a serious illness? “Nothing” is the answer most of us settle on. As a society, we’re lousy at bereavement and worse with sickness.
Why do we place such a disproportionate emphasis on sporting achievement? Why doesn’t success in other fields receive similar attention… Maybe it’s because in a country that prides itself on being egalitarian, sport is intellectually and socio-economically an equal playing field. In fact, the more humble your background, the better, the underdog-turned champion is a narrative that resonates powerfully. We’re far less interested in the stories of our best doctors, writers, lawyers, engineers, teachers or social workers. Their triumphs do not capture our collective imaginations.