Sunday, January 17, 2010


His name was Abdul Baser Wasiqui. He was the only runner representing Afghanistan in Atlanta at the 1996 Olympics. His hamstring was injured before the race, but he ran anyway.

At the time, I was working on my first feature film. Vampire Killer.  I distinctly remember watching TV that day when the cameras caught a glimpse of this one lone man trying to finish a race that had  long ended for everyone else.

Soon everyone would take notice of the man who was about to finish dead last at 111th place. I watched as Abdul headed towards the finish line, at the stadium where workmen were already clearing out the area for the next events.  They noticed Abdul and quickly made a make shift finish line for him with some masking tape.  Everyone, including myself were in awe of him as he crossed the line and broke through the tape.

Bob Costas stated correctly, observing that although Abdul was finishing dead last, his determination to finish the race was the very essence of the spirit of the Olympic games. I was impressed by that. I identified with Abdul Baser Wasiqi. I was running my own marathon. Trying to finish my first feature film. Trying to reach my own cinematic finish line.

I was working at a video editing place at the time. I took my VHS copy of Abdul Baser Wasiqi I had recorded (yes I'm kind of an Olympics fan/nerd). We had a video deck that could print out pictures of a freeze frame from a video tape. I printed one out of Wasiqi crossing the finish line.  This image would always help me to remember that crossing your finish line, no matter what kind of a race you're running, it is possible.

And I think of him now. I think of the pain he endured. His struggle. The only man representing his country. Not the first to cross the finish line, but a winner nonetheless. Where so many others would have just given up, and probably did give up, he finished.  He finished.

I'm going through a bit of my own struggle right now. Trying to reach my finish line. It's hard. Yes, I've been through more difficult times, but it's still hard. Trying to get what's in your head out into reality.

I need to remember this. Remember this pain. Remember how it's all my own doing. Any trouble here is only my fault. And any success will be because of some very hard work. There are somethings going on right now, and it's up to me whether or not they're good or bad, or maybe even bad or AMAZING.  I'm working towards amazing.

Remember this pain. Remember that as hard as you work there is a part of this that is not up to you.  All you can do is your very best, and as much of it as you can.

If Abdul Baser Wasiqi can cross that finish line, so can we all.

I need to envision the greatest most amazingly brilliant out come possible, and make it happen.

Ok, this is going to sound crazy, but in the midsts of writing this blog, God just talked to me. He said only two words.

No blocking.

Ok, so the last part of this blog won't make any sense to anyone, but damn, everything just fell into place just now.

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