My entire life I've been hearing the phrase "Only in America", usually in relation to some bizarre event or custom or meal.  And there have been some bizarre, or even gross things that the phrase has been associated with.  But there's also been some really sweet, if somewhat quirky things that it's been associated with too.

I suppose I'm talking about this today because it's Melbourne Cup Day.  For the uninitiated, the Melbourne Cup is one of the most prestigious horse races in the world.  It ranks right up there with the Grand National in England and the Kentucky Derby in the US.  It really is famous the world over as the "Race that Stops a Nation."  Literally.  For about four minutes the entire country stops.

People from other parts of the world often don't understand it.  Hell, even many Australians don't get it.  People ask, how can a horse race stop an entire country?  The answer is, it just does.

Then there are many people who are critical of it.  Partly because, in my own city of Melbourne, we actually get a whole day as a public holiday when not even all parts of the state of Victoria gets the day off, and nowhere outside of the state gets a public holiday either. 

I'm not critical of the Cup, as it's affectionately known, though I'm probably one of the few people in the country who has it as a personal philosophy to never bet on this particular race.  It's just too hard to pick a winner.

But I say celebrate the thing.  Celebrate the horses, the trainers, the jockeys (but not the whips), and celebrate the glamour and the fashion.  Celebrate because it's important to take time to celebrate something.  It's something that we don't do enough of any more.

I think it's a large part of the reason so many people complain of being stressed or depressed and just give up on goals, give up on accomplishing anything.  People are constantly throwing in the towel because they're looking at the horizon as the point of destination, rather than the landmark that defines it.  You can get to a landmark, but you can't get to the horizon.  The horizon is always the same distance away, but if you take a moment to look behind you, you can see how far you've come.  I think that's always worth celebrating.

And the Melbourne Cup, the Race that stops a Nation?  That's worth celebrating. 

Only in Australia.

Leave a Reply.


    G'day everyone.  I'm an Aussie Life Coach, Clinical Hypnotist (  and author with a passion for making every relationship in our lives the best it can be.   I work at local, state, national and international levels.  I am also a Callahan Techniques Thought Field Therapy practitioner trained by Eugene Piccinotti TFT - dx, and I studied Neuro Linguistic Programming Master Practitioner Level (MNLP) under Steve G Jones at the American University of Neuro-Linguistic Programming
    (  In other words, as a coach, I'll use whatever I have to use to help you to make the changes you want to make.