A sense of humour ought to be cultivated by everybody every day, for a sense of humour is nothing short of a wisdom-tree. This wisdom-tree serves us, feeds us, illumines us and protects us. Zatopek's sense of humour was unique. In response to criticism of his running style, he once declared, "I shall learn to have a better style once they start judging races according to their beauty. So long as it's a question of speed, then my attention will be directed to seeing how fast I can cover the ground." Not self-denial, but self-defense, he felt, is of paramount importance.