Please let me, a junior, compete in the triathlon

Lucy Sullivan, Opinions Editor

The days are getting longer, the birds are chirping, the grass is green—there’s a sense of excitement in the air. This can only mean one thing: the freshman triathlon is upon us. 

This glorious display of athleticism is widely regarded as the magnum opus of Westview ENS, but I, along with the 1,200 other people who make up the current sophomore and junior classes, was robbed of the experience. 

I’ll give it to the school’s administration. They’ve done a phenomenal job at giving us what was lost during the pandemic: Unity Day for the juniors and an outdoor Homecoming, to name a couple. 

But what about the triathlon? Was all of the training that I did in ENS 3-4 for nothing? 

I had studied the route for the run, making note of any possible branches that would pose a tripping hazard. I’d gotten my bike tuned up. Heck, I’d even dusted off my swim gear after a year-long hiatus from the sport. But when the world came crashing down on March 13, 2020, I realized that my dream of dominating in the triathlon, which was still more than two months away at that point, would likely not ever come to fruition. 

Unlike my classmates, I have never stopped training. Every day, I wake up with one thing on my mind, and one thing only. I will compete, and I will win. I mean, let’s be honest, it’s the only reason I’ve stuck with track for the past two years. 

Like it or not, the triathlon is a rite of passage, and frankly, I will consider myself a freshman until I cross that finish line. 

I’m sure that many of my classmates will resent the fact that I am writing this article, but to that, I would say: Have you no faith in yourself? Is there a reason why you cower in the face of challenge? Are you so opposed to facing adversity that you would skip out on what is arguably the most formative experience of a young Wolverine’s life?

This year, I propose that the triathlon is a freshman, sophomore, and junior event. And yes, I say we make it mandatory—it’ll build character.  Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche once said “To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.” What he really meant by that is that the suffering that Westview students face in their journey to complete the triatholon is an integral step in their experience, because with out it, we have no concept  of  “the meaning of life.”  

I believe that many of the problems that the classes of 2023 and 2024 face are direct results of the absence of the triathlon. 

It’s like how the stages of metamorphosis turn a meager caterpillar into a glamorous butterfly. In this analogy, the triathlon is the cocoon, and without it, we as students are unable to become what the most optimized  and complete versions of ourselves. We are still missing a major milestone on our way to becoming productive and well adjusted members of society.

On a serious note, at least let me compete. Please. I really do feel like I could do well and that would make me so happy. Thanks for listening.