I’ve been following people online for more than eight years and blogging myself close to six years. In that time I’ve watched many online acquaintances (and some true friends) run the gauntlet. Today, ‘running the gauntlet’ means to go through a series of criticisms or harsh treatments at the hands of one’s detractors. They’ve suffered the indignities of people telling them they can’t do whatever it is they are trying to accomplish, they are ill-prepared, too many others before them have failed, or they are just plain crazy. Then they run the gauntlet both cheered by some and jeered by most on the sidelines who hope to see a train wreck of epic proportion. When they emerge victoriously on the other side, those who jeered the loudest turn into their greatest fans or they move on to jeer the next person running the gauntlet. It’s human nature.
Given a recent discussion I had with someone who is currently running the gauntlet (and doing very well in spite of the naysayers), I decided to post my favorite movie clip of Richard Gere famously running the gauntlet in the movie First Knight. It couldn’t be more appropriate for so many out there who are currently innovating in the legal space and trying to maintain critical focus. (Pay close attention to what the man in charge of the gauntlet yells to Richard Gere as he begins to run the gauntlet.) I say, ‘keep your eye on the prize’. I’ve had to run the gauntlet, too. Many times, in fact. And I’m here to tell you it can be done.