It has always been my belief that victory is harder to manage than defeat. When human minds are focused on crisis, it may bring out the best outcome possible. Victory, however, is another story. Doubts enter minds. Factions arise. ‘What if?’ becomes the dominant question. The reason is simple: defeat is rarely total or permanent, hence the desire to rescue and reverse; and victory is neither complete nor forever, which ushers in the worries. These truisms were uppermost in my mind when I attended my college gaudy last week.
Gaudies are held around every five years as a grand reunion party. Few people go to the early ones, because it is time to escape university and get on with life. A much larger group go to those held in their middle years: a combination of growing nostalgia and perhaps a wish to show friends and contemporaries the fruits of success.