I'd been hired by CBC Country Canada to do the reining commentary for the World Equestrian Games. There was a host (Nancy) who I'd be sitting with and together we would provide the colour commentary for the reining runs at the Games. It wasn't live, but live to tape. In other words, we sat in a little room with headsets on and gave commentary on the runs.
See... here I am.
Well... I'd psyched myself up for this task. I was wringing my hands, I was losing sleep... I'd wake up in the middle of the night (my two-week old daughter helped with that) and fret about what I DIDN'T know about the sport. Would I flub up and say something was a 2 pt penalty when it was a 1 pt penalty? Would I forget to mention an important rule? Because the sport is so new on the international scene, I don't know what some of the competitors look like or much about them...
But I did my reseach and had rider bios for all 21 countries represented at the Games. I had copious amounts of notes. I had my rule book.
And I was SO overprepared.
The commentary was FUN! It was like sitting down and having a coffee with another horse person and talking horses.
BUT... and I'm kicking myself... I think I did make one rule-related mistake. I said something was against the rules and it turns out that it's not.
Here's the funny part... a trainer I worked for told me specifically that it was against the rules and I bet... I just BET that it was so I would not do it. It's not a major thing, it's a crutch that some riders use to pretend their horse is more broke than it actually is. He didn't want me doing it so he told me it was against the rules.
And I've thought this for almost 8 years now!
Oh well, hopefully I didn't state it as blatantly as I keep remembering myself doing.
I got very positive feedback from several people - most importantly the production crew.
But when I got home, I happened to open the wrong email first and I got some very negative feedback. I'm not disregarding it totally... but I so wanted to refute what they said. I wanted to ask if they realized that it's tough to stick your neck out and know that you aren't going to be perfect. That there are people out there that don't like you and will likely say bad things about you. But you do it anyway.
Funny, but several days before I left I stumbled across a quote that confounded me a little bit. I wasn't entirely sure if I understood it fully. Now I do:
"He who jumps into the void owes no explanation to those who stand and watch."
*Jean Luc Godard