Mo Farah won two Olympic track and field gold medals last summer in the 5,000 metres and 10,000 metres. He also happens to be the current European and World champion at the shorter distance. For two years straight, Farah has been named the European Athlete of the Year, and at the end of 2012, he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire for services to athletics. After finding so much success at these distances, Farah is looking for new challenges, attempting to move up to competitive marathons.
For most intents, and likely even more purposes, he’s a pretty big deal. So, when WDSU anchor LaTonya Norton, out of New Orleans, asked the European, World and Olympic champion runner, “Haven’t you run before? This isn’t your first time?” he probably had a case for feeling somewhat slighted. Consider that the runner had just won a half-marathon by completing the course in just over an hour, and you could likely forgive Farah for walking away from the interview or adopting a more condescending tone with the television personality.
However, if Farah is a great runner, his patience and humility make him an even greater person. Instead of reacting negatively to the television presenter’s lack of awareness, he politely completed the awkward interview despite it most likely being a complete and utter waste of his time.
As for Norton, I realize not every newscaster is Will McAvoy, but the most perfunctory of internet searches by her or her team would’ve revealed Farah’s status, and saved the anchor from what is turning into international embarrassment.