It’s Not Just Winning — It’s Who You Beat to Win [Daily Game]

In Blog, Confidence, Daily Game, Discipline, Mental Toughness
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Omar was a star character on the HBO series The Wire. There’s a lot to Omar’s character, but for purposes of this post, know one thing: Omar performed armed robberies on drug dealers for a living. He’d then either sell those stolen drugs back to the dealers, or sometimes sell the drugs himself for his income. Omar carried a large shotgun, and his reputation in the street was well-earned.

One morning, Omar heads to the corner bodega to grab some cereal. On his way back, he posts up in front of an abandoned house to smoke a cigarette. He has a (smaller) gun on his person, but only for protection; Omar isn’t out to rob anyone at this moment.

The drug dealers hiding inside that abandoned building, unbeknownst to Omar, aren’t mind readers. Only one thing matters to them: That the most notorious robber in Baltimore is calmly waiting outside of their place of business. The dealers assume that Omar is patiently waiting for the drugs he came to take from the dealers, so they make everyone’s day easier: They drop their package of drugs out of an upstairs window that lands at the feet of a very surprised Omar. Though he hadn’t come to rob anyone, Omar likes free money just as much as you or I do. He takes the package.

Arriving back home with the cereal and the drugs, Omar’s partner is pleasantly surprised to see the extras Omar brought back. But Omar laments that he doesn’t even want the drugs.

It’s easy money, his partner challenges. Why wouldn’t we want it?

It’s not what you’re taking, Omar responds, it’s who you’re taking it from. How can you run with the wolves at night if you spend all day sporting with puppies?


I saw the video on this tweet (which is hopefully still there by the time you read this), showing a girl fight in McDonald’s between a customer and an employee.

Even though the customer got beat up, I didn’t feel bad for her — from what I see, she started it by throwing a drink, and she appears to be inebriated: Even after she gets beat up, separately by two different female employees, the defeated customer keeps coming at the manager who’s beaten her up (the manager, understanding that she’s not in danger, mercifully declines to beat the bitch up even more when she could have done so).

The customer deserved what she got.

You may have seen the video of some anti-Trump guy stealing the MAGA hat of, and throwing a drink (this must be the attack of choice these days) on some guys on the Fourth of July.

I felt bad for the victims. Though I didn’t vote for Trump, I’m not mad at anyone who supports him or wears the MAGA hat. But, even if I hated the President, this wasn’t the thing to do.

The assailant in the video is bigger, older and clearly more aggressive than the drink-drenched victims. Unlike the McDonald’s altercation, this isn’t two entities equally “wanting the smoke,” going at it, and one of them winning. This is one entity angling for a confrontation and the other clearly not wanting it — the aggressor bullied the victims.

This is Omar happily taking a package of drugs from small-time dealers that he doesn’t even respect.

You don’t get better by doing this.

For Your Game

  1. Yes, small wins over weak opposition can build your confidence and get you a track record (not to say that that’s all the MAGA bully does; maybe he was just having a bad day). Maybe it feeds your ego and impresses a certain percentage of the population. But when it comes time for a real challenge against a seriously worthy opponent, if this is all you’re doing, you won’t be prepared.

  1. Over the years, athletes have asked me if it’s better for them to play for a weaker team (where the player can, presumably, be the star), or a stronger team (where the player may not even be a starter or get a lot of attention amongst the much-better players who would be his teammates). Any serious athlete always takes the tougher challenge. The non-athlete does the same.

  1. Real power is in restraint: The person who could pop off and do something destructive, but chooses not to. The person who could fuck you up the worst is the one who never tells you how badly he could fuck you up. Strength moves quietly.

PS- You can get a Free physical copy of my Confidence book The Super You here.



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