Danny Merrell Reflects on 50 Years of Life
As I celebrate my birthday today and look back on my past 50 years, one thing is for certain.
I have truly been blessed.
I have my faith, my family, and my health and I wouldn't change a thing about my life. The events of the past 50 years, many mistakes included, have led me to where I should be. With that being said, I thought it would be fun or even therapeutic in a sense to reflect back on a few points.
Moment I knew I would entertain for a living
It was April 1971 and the Miss Lockhart pageant was being held. Also being crowned in conjunction with this competition were the titles of Little Mr. and Miss Lockhart. I was a 1st grader and already liked the spotlight so this seem to be a perfect fit. The only issue was talent. What would I do for my talent? My favorite entertainer at the time was Flip Wilson and I liked to impersonate him, but I had never done so in public. Long story short, I pulled off the impersonation, got lots of laughs, and won the trophy. (Yup, those pictures above are from that pageant)
Best advice I didn't understand...until it was too late
I remember sitting inside a football field house a few minutes before our game with the Gonzales Apaches. Our head coach was pacing about and he said something to the effect of "I wish I could put on the pads and get on the field with you guys...you seniors just don't know how much you're gonna miss this game once the season is over." (by the way, that's me #55 in the white)
10 minutes following our final game of the season, what he said hit home. I always played hard, I was an all-district lineman. However, when you're no longer allowed to play a game that you took for granted, you realize how much harder you could have and should have played. A lot of athletes know that feeling of regret and it can be difficult to overcome.
Play every play and live every day like it's your last.
Most embarrassing moment of my life
Actually, there have been quite a few, but my kids love this story.
I was in 3rd grade English class. The teacher, Mrs. Brown, was giving instructions on...something. I was distracted, by a girl. Her name was Cynthia and she was sitting towards the front of the class. I was gazing at her and not paying much attention to anything else. As a couple minutes went by I did notice that some of my classmates were raising their hands and being called on by the teacher.
It didn't take me long to figure out that the lesson for the day involved the letter 'C'. Everyone that Mrs. Brown called on was giving examples of words that started with that letter. My hand shot up in the air as I recognized this great opportunity to impress the fair maiden. The teacher looked my way and said, "Danny, do you have a word?"
"Cynthia!"...I think I shouted it.
"No, Danny," said Mrs Brown, "we're wanting 'C' words that have the hard K sound, not the soft S sound."
I didn't raise my hand again until I was a sophomore, and that was for the bathroom. (my sophomore pic)