Some say that nice guys finish last. Albert Schweitzer, famous humanitarian, counters: “Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate.” Apple TV’s show Ted Lasso makes the case for the nice guy. In an age were dark, gritty anti-hero stories such as Succession and Breaking Bad are popular, Ted Lasso is a breath of warm hearted fresh air. In the series, American football Coach Ted Lasso is hired to coach a British football (soccer) team. He has zero experience. Little does he know that the owner of the team, his boss, Rebecca has hired him in order to make the team fail. This is a ploy to get back at her cheating, no good, ex-husband Rupert. Ted’s unique brand of southern charm, empathy, and authenticity manages to win over the team, the town, and his co-workers while making the audience laugh and feel good. Something that is particularly needed at this specific moment in the world. Here are ten of the best Ted Lasso isms to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside.
Rebecca: “Do you believe in ghosts Ted?”
Ted: ““I do. But more importantly, I think they need to believe in themselves.”
When getting a tour of the club on his first day Ted makes this remark about ghosts and believing in oneself. Ted is the eternal optimist by choice. He chooses to see the best in all people and situations. This is what makes him so spectacular. His choice to see the best in everything causes the audience to wonder what would happen in their lives if they did as well. What if the audience believed in themselves? Believed the best was yet to come?
“Takin’ on a challenge is a lot like riding a horse. If you’re comfortable while you’re doin’ it, you’re probably doin’ it wrong.”
When Coach Beard agrees with Ted that coaching football (soccer) with no experience is crazy, Ted gives this advice. Sometimes it is good to get out of one’s comfort zone and take on a new adventure. It will help you grow as a person and expand your world view. Thanks for the reminder Coach.
“You know what the happiest animal on Earth is? It’s a goldfish. You know why? Got a ten-second memory. Be a goldfish, Sam.”
After player Sam misses a play in practice and is taunted by teammate Jamie, Ted offers this advice. Instead of being held back by the pain and hurt of the past, one should forge ahead. Do not let a fear of failure paralyze you. Be a goldfish.
“I think if you care about someone and you got a little love in your heart, there ain’t nothin you can’t get through together.”
Rebecca, the team’s owner, finally comes clean to Ted about her cruel intentions to ruin the team. Although she no longer wishes to take down the team, she feels awful. Ted does the unthinkable. He forgives her. He offers these words as to why he offers this forgiveness. People make mistakes. Forgiveness is a gift one can give not only the person who did the misdeed but also oneself.
“Don’t let the wisdom of age be wasted on you.”
Jamie Tartt is a young, conceded, hot shot with little interest in being part of a team. Roy Kent is the team’s aging captain who has seen it all and was once a young cocky hotshot himself. Ted knows the two could learn a lot from each other, if they could just get over themselves. He gives Roy this advice when trying to convince him to have a better relationship with young Jamie.
“I promise you, there is something worse out there than being sad. And that is being alone and being sad. Ain’t no one in this room alone.”
After loosing the big game and their standing in the league, Ted offers these words of condolence to the team. It’s okay, even healthy, to be sad but they should remember they are not alone. They are all in this sad place together which makes it almost okay.
“Be curious. Not judgmental.”
When Rebecca’s cheating ex-husband Rupert tries to get involved with the team, Ted intervenes. He challenges Rupert to a game of darts not knowing that Ted is fantastic at them. If Ted wins, Rupert has to stay away from the owners box while Rebecca is in it and if Rupert wins, he gets to pick the team line-up for the last two games. Ted credits his dart challenge win to this life philosophy. He incorrectly attributes the saying to Walt Whitman, which is a common mistake. Nevertheless, the sentiment stands. If Rupert had taken the time to ask Ted about his experience playing darts, he would have learned Ted play every Sunday with his Dad from ages 10-16. Instead Rupert judged and this mistake cost him access to his beloved team. What if we all took the time to understand someone before passing judgement? The world would be a better place.
Rebecca: “How do you take your tea?”
Ted: “Well, normally right back to the counter because there’s been a terrible mistake. I always thought that tea was just gonna taste like hot brown water. And you know what? I was right. It’s horrible. No, thank you. Tea and I are still on a lifelong hiatus.”
Ted hates tea and living in England that might even be criminal. Ted does not change to please others. He is authentically himself, flaws and all. By being this way, Ted allows others to follow his example. Wouldn’t the world be better if it was filled with authentic humans following their hearts?
The Bottom Line . . .
Apple TV’s Ted Lasso is the ultimate good guy. If you are looking for a feel good comedy, look no further. It will leave you feeling better about the world then when you started watching it.