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当团队挑人时,你会被选中吗?

2014-07-21    来源:财富网    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

Will You be Chosen for the Team?

When I was a kid growing up in the U.S. Midwest, baseball and American football were very popular after school sports among my friends and schoolmates. Basketball was a close third.
在我小时候,棒球和橄榄球是当时美国中西部同学朋友们放学后最喜欢的体育运动,其次才是篮球。

In primary school days, pick-up games of baseball and football were popular after school and on weekends. We were fortunate to have enough public parks nearby, available for anyone at no cost and without advance booking, accessible either on foot or by bicycle.
上小学时,我们课余和周末最流行的活动就是学打棒球和橄榄球。当年我们运气不错,周边有很多公园,走路、骑车都能到,还不用花钱或提前预定。

These were “pick-up” games, spontaneously organized by kids, without adult supervision, referees, etc. There were also formal programs like Little League baseball and school-organized sports teams, but that’s not what I am talking about here.
作为孩子们自发组织的“入门”活动,球场上既没有大人指导,也不设裁判。当然也有一些正规的组织,比如“少棒联盟”和校队,但这不是我要说的。

A new style of baseball, called “whiffle ball” was introduced when I was a kid. It involved plastic balls and bats, which greatly reduced the risk of breaking a neighbor’s window, thus expanding the range of places where baseball games could be played, to include backyards and driveways.
小时候有种新棒球刚问世,叫作“威孚球”,其实就是塑料做的空心球和球棒。它的出现大大降低了误伤邻居玻璃的风险,连带也放宽了对场地的限制,甚至在后院和车道上都能打。

The participants in these games were local neighborhood kids and schoolmates. The group was somewhat fluid. Some guys — and it was a “guy” thing in those days — played more often than others; but there was room for a wide range of skill levels.
去打球的都是些邻居家的孩子和同学,人员很不固定。有些小爷——那年月打棒球可是件挺“爷们儿”的事儿——打得比别人多,但技术水平却相差甚远。

Prior to secondary school, I don’t recall having that much homework, and no one I knew was getting after-school tutoring or taking after-school lessons in music, ballet or other pursuits. This was, after all, the suburbs. In wealthier downtown neighborhoods, like parts of Manhattan, it would have been a different story.
上中学前,我几乎没什么作业,也没见过谁要去上补习班或者兴趣班学音乐、芭蕾之类。毕竟我们住在郊区,如果换作市里的富人区,比如曼哈顿,那情形肯定大不相同。

In other words, there were few scheduling issues getting in the way of childhood pursuits such as after school sports, so sports assumed a fairly large role in the play time agenda.
换句话说,童年时没有什么既定的日程能阻碍我对课余体育活动的追求,所以运动就成为玩耍的主要内容。

Since these were not fixed, organized teams based on school or neighborhood affiliations, the make-up of opposing teams was subject to discussion and decision each time.
由于人员不固定,球队也不是按照学校或邻里关系成立的,所以每次都要临时商议如何分队。

The usual process of picking sides was to first nominate two ”team captains” and then let the both captains take turns choosing the members they wanted. Team captains were obviously respected as well as considered adept at the particular sport we were playing that day.
分队的一般程序是先任命两名“队长”,然后再由他们轮流挑选想要的队员。当然,队长肯定要受人尊重,并且擅长我们当年热衷的这项运动。

During the selection process there was lively banter, with some of the waiting candidates lobbying the captains: “Pick me, I wanna be on your team…” and so on. The first ones to be picked were fortunate; the last ones not so.
选队员的过程最热闹不过,有些人会向队长拉票,说些“选我选我,我要和你一个队……”之类的话。第一个被选中的往往比较幸运,最后一名就不同了。

Once the selection was complete, the game would begin. Any disagreements about rule infractions or other disputes had to be settled among the players, since there was no adult supervision. There were arguments sometimes, but I don’t recall any very heated ones.
队员一旦选定,比赛就马上开始。因为没有大人监督,所以即便对犯规或其他问题产生分歧,也只能由队员自行解决。虽然有时会起些争执,但我还真不记得发生过什么激烈过火的情形。

Thinking back on those days gives rise to two reflections.
遥想当年,我有两点感悟。

The first relates to the tremendous demographic and social change which has taken place in my home town and most other parts of America in the past 50 years.
首先,过去50年,我的故乡和美国其他大部分地方的人口和社会结构都发生了巨变。

My home town is a suburb of Chicago, and was then predominantly white and middle class.
我的老家在芝加哥郊区,那里曾是中产阶级白人的聚居地。

In primary school, the entire student body lived in that town and was white, and included a handful of recent immigrants from Europe whose English was not yet fluent. Our teachers were mostly Catholic nuns, and in hindsight I’m not sure how many of them had college degrees.
上小学时,学生都是住在镇上的白人,只有寥寥几个欧洲新移民,而且英文还不太灵光。老师大多是天主教修女,事后想想也不知道她们有几位上过大学。

My secondary school, located in the same town, had a student body of roughly 1500. We had a small handful of blacks, Hispanics and Asian Americans, but the vast majority were white. A fairly significant number of students lived in “the city” and commuted up to an hour by school bus. As a result, the student body was slightly more diverse socio-economically than that of my primary school. Compared to primary school, academics were much more demanding and competitive, as were extracurricular activities, including sports.
我念的中学也在镇上,大约有1,500名学生,包括少数黑人、西班牙葡萄牙裔和华裔美国人,剩下绝大多数仍是白人。很多学生都住在“市里”,上下学需要坐1小时的校车,所以学生的社会经济构成比我小学时更复杂些。和小学相比,中学的学业要求更高,竞争更激烈,课外活动包括体育运动也是一样。

Today the demographics of the town and both schools is far more diverse racially and ethnically, and averages more in the upper middle class bracket. There are no nuns teaching in the primary school. Academic qualifications are much higher for teachers today. My high school, which was an all boys school, has been co-educational for quite a few years.
如今,无论是城镇还是中小学的人口构成在人种和民族上都更加多元化,而且平均都在中产偏上阶层。小学老师中已见不到修女,对教师的资质要求也大幅提升。我就读的男子高中多年前也开始男女同校。

I’m told by friends who stayed on in my home town and raised families there, that the type of spontaneous self-organized after-school sports which we enjoyed is basically a thing of the past.
留在老家成家立业的朋友告诉我,我们最爱的自发性课余体育活动早已时过境迁。

Kids today have less time available for free activities after school due to increased homework and more formally organized after-school activities. Parents also tend to worry more about their kids’ safety than in the “good old days,” so the kind of pick-up games we used to play are often considered off-limits.
如今,小孩们放学后作业太多,有组织的课余活动也多,所以很少有时间自由活动。和当年的“好日子”相比,家长们也更担心孩子的安全,所以我们以前常玩的游戏现在都被禁止了。

So that first reflection is more or less a local one.
这点感悟或多或少与美国相关。

The second reflection I would share has to do with teamwork, and how we learn about it; and this is more of a global one.
第二点感悟主要与团队合作及如何学会团队合作有关,更具有全球性。

Unlike many American schools today, teachers in my day rarely gave school assignments to teams of students. So after school sports was a relatively important place to learn about teamwork, because that really didn’t happen in the classroom.
和现在美国学校的情况不同,我当年的老师很少给学生布置集体任务,所以课余体育活动就成为学习团队合作比较重要的地方,因为课堂里确实学不到。

In hindsight, I learned a few things about teamwork from this experience, which I am grateful for.
后来我才发现,从这段经历中我学会很多团队合作的东西,对此我十分感恩。

You don’t have to be the best at something to be picked for a team. You need determination and the desire to win; to try your best against whatever odds you’re up against. You need to be accountable for your mistakes; and at the same time, willing to risk making mistakes. You need to be able to pick yourself up after getting knocked down. Obviously, you also need to balance your own interests with that of the team, no matter how talented you think you are.
能被队长选中不见得非要技术过人,但必须具备求胜的欲望和获胜的决心,能力排一切险阻,勇于承担错误并敢于犯错,被打倒了再爬起来,百折不挠。当然还要平衡个人与团队的利益,不管自认为个人的能力有多么突出。

Demographic and social change is continuous.
人口和社会的变革永不停歇。

Even against the backdrop of dramatic social change, we somehow need to learn how to be picked for, and to function effectively, within a team.
即使是在社会剧烈动荡的背景下,我们也要学会如何被队长选中,并且在队伍中发挥有效作用。

Parents and teachers should bear in mind that although test results and grades are important, some lessons — like learning how to work in teams — are not measured in school exams. Yet they are crucial to success in life and careers.
父母和老师应该牢记,成绩和级别固然重要,但某些课程——比如在团队中如何工作——是不能通过学校考试衡量的,但这些恰恰是人生和职业成功的关键。

As the world continues to shrink, becoming ever more globalized and closely interconnected on a real time basis, teamwork-related skills and qualities become even more crucial.
随着世界不断变小、全球化加剧、实时互动更加紧密,团队合作的技巧和水平也变得更为重要。

Last time I looked, there was no SAT, AP or GMAT exam for teamwork. Maybe there oughta be.
上次我看了一下,团队合作还没有SAT、AP、GMAT考试,也许应该考虑增设一下。(财富网)



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