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When Attitude Is Everything

Seeing the real victory in FIFA’s World Cup decisions.
| |Photography by Elizabeth Lavin
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04 February 2023: Views of the 2026 FIFA World Cup announcements of match venues at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Photo by James D. Smith/Dallas Cowboys Photo by James D. Smith/Dallas Cowboys
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When I was in my 20s, my mom and I took a ski trip to Winter Park in Colorado. While there, I talked her into doing  a NASTAR ski race just for fun. I went down the course first, then it was her turn while I watched from the bottom of the hill. Still a beginner, she took her time, traversing much of the mountain and snowplowing the entire way. 

It was a sunny day, and people were enjoying après ski outdoors at a mid-mountain lodge. Soon, they began to take notice. At first, a few people made fun of my mom. “At least she’s trying!” I thought.

But as my mom continued to make her way down the hill, the mood of the crowd shifted. Everyone began cheering her on and shouting, “Go, go, go!” They lost their minds when she crossed the finish line—it was glorious. I will never forget her beaming smile as she held her ski poles high in the air in the shape of a “V” for victory.

The experience taught me a lot about perspective and attitude. I thought about this when the news broke that Dallas would not be getting the FIFA World Cup final as widely expected. Assistant Editor Layten Praytor was there for the official announcement. There was complete disbelief in the room, he said. And after the press conference, he felt as though he had just left a funeral. 

Managing Editor Ben Swanger had been working for months on a profile of pivotal figure Monica Paul, executive director of the Dallas Sports Commission. (The story is exceptional; don’t miss it.)

“We still won a lot of matches, right?” I asked Ben as he was updating his story. “Yes, it’s still a big win for the region to host the most games of any stadium,” he said. “We host nine games, which is huge.”

I thought about the people of North Texas, and I knew it wouldn’t be long before they shook off the negative and focused on the positive. That indomitable spirit is one of our region’s greatest strengths. I knew everyone would quickly see the real victory in the outcome—just like my mom.  

Author

Christine Perez

Christine Perez

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Christine is the editor of D CEO magazine and its online platforms. She’s a national award-winning business journalist who has…

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