If I had to sum up my philosophy of life in one word, it would be: persevere. I believe that any of life’s challenges can be met if you put your head down and just keep on keepin’ on.
I chose the name of this blog based on that philosophy. But “persevere” was already taken. As was “strive.” As were a dozen similar alternatives. “In the Deed,” however, was not.
And selecting this name results in a perfect mash-up of my life’s philosophy and one of my other passions: Nebraska football.
Inscribed into the four corners of the University of Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium is a poem that could serve as the long version of my life’s philosophy. The poem was written by Hartley Burr Alexander, a UNL philosophy professor. The inscription goes:
“In Commemoration of the men of Nebraska who served and fell in the Nation’s Wars.
“Not the victory but the action; Not the goal but the game; In the deed the glory.
“Courage; Generosity; Fairness; Honor; In these are the true awards of manly sport.
“Their Lives they held their country’s trust; They kept its faith; They died its heroes.”
My greatest joy doesn’t come from the victory, but rather the action: Training for marathons and trail races. Finding the right angle for a photo. Composing and recomposing a painting. Exploring the flavors for a cheesecake or a cupcake. Finding New Orleans’ best bar (as if there was just one).
I’ll never run a marathon like Ryan Hall nor paint like Thomas Hart Benton.
But I’ve yet to run my best race. Or shoot my best photo. I will strive to improve. I will persevere. And I will continue to revel in the effort. Because I know, In the deed lies the glory.
— Mark Smidt
A little background
Although my wife and I have lived in several states over the years, we are native Midwesterners. But we began a new adventure on the Oregon coast in late 2015.
Here’s a link to my community, Lincoln City, Oregon, located on the Pacific Ocean and adjacent to the Oregon Coast Range.
Here’s a link to one of the newspapers I run, the News Guard, and that site contains links to our sister newspapers in Oregon.