Butter, Moths, and Flies

“Growing up, I remember playing on the escalators at the mall. My favorite thing to do was to try to run up the escalator that was heading down. I am sure I was not alone doing this, but just in case you don’t remember, the problem with doing this is that if you stop to catch your breath before you reach the end, you start losing ground. As I look at my life now in retrospect, I realize that I taught myself a good principle all those days on the escalators. I taught my self that in pursuing good, that stagnancy is death. If I stop doing good, I start doing bad. I find that this is true in almost all aspects of life, and it has been staring us in the face for years.

Many years ago, Yoda said “Do or do not, there is no try.” This is the same principle. We must constantly seek to improve our lives, or our lives will be worse of than we were before. CS Lewis once stated “It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad.” While this quote deals with other issues, the last part applies to what I am saying. You can not go on indefinitely remaining an egg, you must move on and progress, or rot. We must have constant vigilance and continue going on, if we do not we will fail. We must endure until the top of the staircase. This reminds me of an African story.

Every morning, when the sun comes up in Africa, a gazelle wakes up.

It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed.

Every morning a lion wakes up.

It knows that it must outrun the slowest gazelle or it will starve to death.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a lion or a gazelle.

When the sun comes up, you better start running.

We had best start running, and keep going until we have finished the race or suffer the consequences of stopping.

I wrote this last year and recently revisited it. I want to know now is what happens when you discover that the race you thought you were in doesn’t exist, or that while you thought you were a participant, you discovered you didn’t have the necessary qualifications to compete halfway through the race. Should you push yourself to the end of the race, which you are not enjoying, for nothing, or should you drop out of the race and go and do something you enjoy. I guess it all comes down to a cost benefit ratio and sometimes it is troubling to discover the effects and results of that ratio.

What do you do to something when the cost far outweighs the benefit, logically you should drop it and focus on something with a higher cost/benefit right? I am in amongst that debate now and even though it would drastically change my life, I believe that the cost far outweighs the benefit in my situation and I, being the logical person that I am, am most likely going to change my lifestyle soon. I do not know what form it will take and what tendrils to my old life will remain, but I am going through a metamorphosis right now. Lets just hope that I emerge as something useful and productive that I can agree with and be happy and proud about. Because as Pete Rose says, “You owe it to yourself to be the best you can possibly be – in baseball and in life.

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