When we watch a contest or sport, and internalize the deep fact
that this is an activity that has no ultimate consequence, no
later outcome, no real effect beyond itself, we invest it with
tremendous significance because in this world of history and
work and endless, tangled consequence, to have no "real"
consequence or sequel is such a rare event. And when in the
midst of that free time activity (as we understand the meaning
of leisure) a person on the field or fairway, rink, floor, or
track, performs an act that surpasses - despite his or her
evident mortality, his or her humanness - whatever we have
seen or heard of or could conceive of doing ourselves, then we
have witnessed, full-fledged, fulfilled, what we anticipated
and what all the repetition in the game strove for, a moment
when we are all free of all constraint of all kinds, when pure
energy and pure order create an instant of complete coherence.
In that instant, pulled to our feet, we are pulled out of
ourselves. We feel what we saw, become what we perceived.