About a week ago I came across a story on the internet which explained how Tim Tebow attempted to conduct a prayer before taking the Wonderlic test at the NFL Combine.
Here's the link to the story. Below is a small excerpt containing the relevant portion for my discussion:
At the Scouting Combine, the Wonderlic exam is administered to players in groups. The 12-minute test is preceded by some brief instructions and comments from the person administering the test.
Per a league source, after the person administering the test to Tebow's group had finished, Tebow made a request that the players bow their heads in prayer before taking the 50-question exam.
To get to the point, and assuming this story is true, I found this request very inconsiderate. Not because it was a prayer and was religious. Let me just get that out there quickly so this whole post doesn't turn into a "HydroTech hates religion" mudslinging fest. Nope, my quarrel isn't with the fact that what he wanted was a prayer.
My quarrel is with the fact that what he wanted was a public accommodation for something that is personal, and that should have been done on his own time.
The combine, along with the rest of the professional and business world, runs on a schedule. It runs on a schedule so that everyone knows when things start, and when things end. With everyone on the same page, order and continuity exists and chaos does not. But when somebody tries to derail the schedule with a personal request, chaos will ensue.
For those of you that are business men or women in the world, you wouldn't schedule a 10 am teleconference meeting with other important people all across the nation, but then just as the meeting is about to begin hold up your hand and say "excuse me, can we postpone the meeting for a moment? I have to [insert personal request]". That personal request can be a prayer, telling the others you have to postpone the meeting for 5 minutes so you can run to the restroom, telling the others that you need a moment to go fix yourself a coffee, etc. It doesn't really matter what the request is, such personal requests at such moments are completely inappropriate.
The real world does not run this way. You take care of your personal business on your own personal time. You do not take care of your personal business on public time or other people's time.
Does TwistNHook stroll into California Superior Court at 8:30 am, and just as the judge is about to begin proceedings thrust up his hand and say "excuse me, your honor, please grant me a moment of silence so I can pray that my wife will buy me the latest season of Gossip Girls on DVD"?
What the kind of crap is that?
But some of you might be thinking, what's the big deal? It was only probably going to delay the combine testing for a minute.
So a minute delay is okay? What about three minutes? Five minutes? Ten minutes? Twenty minutes? 30 minutes? An hour? Where do you want to draw the line? Do you want to draw the line? I don't think most people can really say where the line is. So instead of trying to determine where the line somewhere in there, let's just make a bright line rule: No personal requests on the public's time.
I mean, if that personal request was only going to take a minute, then why couldn't Tebow have done that on his own time? There are 1440 minutes in a day. And he chose that minute to make his request?!?!?
He could have prayed while he was on the toilet. He could have prayed when he was eating a bowl of cereal. He could have prayed while waiting in an elevator. He could have prayed while waiting for the toast to brown. He could have prayed while staring at the wall above the urinal while taking a leak. He could have prayed while at a red light while waiting in his car. Alternatively, if he was being chauffeured around he could have prayed while sitting in the car. He could have prayed in the dressing room or locker room. He could have prayed before he went to bed. He could have prayed when he woke up instead of contemplating how his life will change in a few weeks when he's a millionaire.
I'm sure you get the point. There are many opportunities to take a moment out of your time to fulfill a personal need.
But it is NOT acceptable, in the business world (and the NFL counts as a business world), to make such personal requests on other people's time. It is inconsiderate to all the other people who are operating on the strict schedule that they have planned their day around.
This is a lesson Tim Tebow has to learn.
Update: It has been brought to my attention that perhaps this entire incident was either a complete misunderstanding or completely false. Link: http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/03/24/tebow-denies-wonderlic-incident/.
Note from all the moderators: Please do not discuss the merits of religion in this post. This post is not meant to debate the merits of any religion or its place in sports. We will be heavily monitoring this post and will be issuing warnings or bans for violations.