Tuesday, October 5, 2010

On my own terms

Ramblings Post #140
Sometimes we all need raise our vision to take stock of the world around us. And sometimes, we need to duck our heads and keep at the grind. The trick is knowing when to do which, and keeping it all straight in your head. Here is a parable.

There was a race held one day, and three men participated.

The Allen ran a steady race, and in the end finished first among the many participants.
The Bob ran a steady race, but finished in the middle of the crowd.
The Chuck ran a poor race, and halfway through, thoroughly tired, gave up.

That night each the three men met, and each wanted to share with the others the story of his triumph.

How was that possible?

Allen had run the race many times before, always doing well but never quite winning. He'd finally come in first after many years of trying.

Bob had always done poorly. But this time he'd prepared properly and run a good race, beating his best time and finishing well ahead of where he'd finished in other outings.

Chuck had never run the race. He'd often thought about, but had always found an excuse. This time he'd actually gone out and run. He hadn't finished, but he'd started, and that was a beginning of something he knew he could continue.

The moral here? Bob might have had a hard time understanding why Allen wouldn't have been happy with third or fourth, and Bob might not understand how Chuck's not finishing is considered good. But everyone's triumph is different. Everyone's victory is defined on their own terms. We all need to stop trying to judge other's lives by our own standards. Makes things easier.

Barkeep. I have educated the masses. Something brown.

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