The 5th Place Champion

He was indeed very popular around the school that everybody knew him for being the best in what he can do, which is athletics. I hated him because he had so much confidence in his ability that his aura was to become the best among the rest. All the girls loved him. Every guy wanted to be him. To them, being him means you are their kind of guy. His name is albegeny. The man I always wish I was but failed to admit it. I would say he was the one I hate to love but love to hate.

There was nothing more that I yearn for than to get one over him. I wanted to become more popular than him. I wanted everyone to idolize me and not him. He was known for being a good runner on the field; he held an excellent record that went unbeaten. All I ever wanted was an opportunity to embarrass him at what he knows how to do best, for I was quite a good runner but not as good as him. I had waited for that opportunity to come, even though he was better than me, the chance to get one over him was too good a task to ignore.

Finally, I got my wish. I was among seven athletes that were selected to compete in an annual 100-meter track and field event. To my surprise, the reigning champion, albegeny, was also selected. I was happy to be part of the race, for it allowed me to prove to the school that I was a better runner than him. He was not aware that I was competing against him. To him, it was business as usual, for he had his heart set on retaining the current title.

The day of the event came, and the crowd was cheering for us. I had my side-eyes on albegeny trying to figure out his pregame ritual. He was so calm and collected that I decided to act the same. His personality became mine for the day, for I had forgotten who I was that I began to mimic his every move.

We got into position for the start of the race. I was so nervous that I felt my adrenaline pumping. My only aim was to beat albegeny in the race that I forgot that there were five other runners.

The loud sound of the starting pistol went off, and the race began. During the race, I found myself ahead of albegeny. I realized that he was not at his best that it empowered me to create a gap between us. I could not believe that the great albegeny was behind me, and I was ahead of him. I could see the finish line within a distance that my heart was pumping in joy even though I was tired.

The race had finally ended, and we came to a complete stop. I had defeated albegeny. I was so happy that I jumped for joy. Something immediately got my attention. I realized that I was the only one cheering for myself, for the entire crowd was celebrating the 1st and 2nd place winners. I looked ahead of me, and I saw a triumphant 1st place winner. Then I looked behind me, and I saw a defeated albegeny who came out in 6th place. He was almost in tears not because he lost to me but because he had lost his crown as the reigning champion. At the end of the race, no one cheered for me or albegeny. I guess we were all losers.

Then I began to think that I could have become more popular than albegeny if I had targeted the first place. Albegeny was never a threat to my becoming popular. The only danger was my selfish ego that went after an individual instead of the ultimate prize to success that was open to everyone on the track. Now guess how that made me look like, DUMBO. As always, it’s my opinion.

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