Triathlon and american auto racing seem to share both a dependence on equipment and a zaniness of promoting that equipment. Lacking a car body, triathletes instead doodle on #socialmedia by routinely butchering the #Queen’s English by posting, #tweeting or #blogging in the form of…
“Love my @FastBike. Couldn’t have won my AG at #SuperDuperTriathlon without it. Thanks to @TastyGel and @PurpleBrownie for the power to go fast! Can’t wait to wear my new @FastPants and @CoolShades on the podium!!!”
Personally, I think triathletes’ abuse of the #hashtag has gotten #freakin #outofcontrol, though I fully understand how this trend has evolved. Triathlon is a pricy, gear-driven sport to a significant degree, and any #sponsorship or #discount perceived as making this sport less pricy or more technologically-balanced is now praised by #athletes with a #hashtag. It becomes more of a vicious #CircleOfLife because things like #sponsorship, #charityracing and membership in the @TriathlonClub can also be symbols of #status that help validate why we do this challenging sport that, frankly, is still a bit on the #fringe of the mainstream. Hence, the never-ending flow of #hashtags!
But nearly all these things that we praise with a #hashtag are companies and products that, once the horn goes off, get us to the finish line faster…whether it is riding the @FastBike, getting cheers from @EliteTeamRacers or eating those delicious @PurpleBrownies.
Think…what actually helps get you to the starting line? It’s not #hashtags. It’s people! (not @People). And of all the people in the world, who are the ones most responsible for you being “here”? Who is your greatest @CorporateSponsor? Hopefully, the answer for you is both your mother and your father. If your father is like mine, he thinks “#” is a “pound sign”. (He also thinks “£“ is a “pound sign”, so at least we agree on that.) If your father is also like mine, he and my mom literally put you on the starting line.
Just remember, #hashtags help you to be competitive. Moms, dads, and people help you to be a competitor. Thank your #sponsors, but also thank your parents and remember your dad on Father’s Day (not #fathersday).