My palms were sweaty as my name was called. It was in a fairgrounds, during the busiest time of the year, when a fair was actually going on. It was my first Rubik’s cube competition, and I had an overall rank of 7th place out of two rounds, with the first containing 75 people. I even beat the delegate, or organizer of the event, with an average solve time of 13.97.
I was on fire.
I headed for the stage, where the finals were being held, and I went to the stage to finish the day. It was head-to-head styled, and the person next to me went first (the two of us were not allowed to solve the cubes at the same time due the rules of competition). I was sweating buckets, seeing all the people in front of me, both cubers and non-cubers, judging us with curious eyes.
As I was trying to control my shaking, I hear the person solving next to me solving. I wait for him to finish, but he keeps going. And going. And going. It feels like an eternity later when he slams down a 43 second solve, which is a very, very terrible solve for a person who averages 14 seconds. Confidence boosted, I start my solve, and 5 solves later, I still lost to that person by a 1 second difference in the average. I learned.
Don’t get overconfident.