I prefer Burger King over McDonald’s. There’s something about the secret sauce in Big Mac’s that give me the hershey squirts and I find the fries too salty (even though I’ve heard you can ask for no salt on them). In the end, both are poor dining choices. For some reason, I had this hunger for a whopper and it just happen to be Whopper Wednesday. It didn’t taste as good as I anticipated and it undoubtedly did not fulfill the desire. What I want is not what actually fills the need. This is just a lesson of life everybody has to learn.
Knowing what you want is completely foreign because it’s far simpler to find out what the other person wants. You think you know what you want but it’s not until you’ve attempted to get what you want that you discover it really wasn’t what you wanted. Confusing. It’s quicker to define what you want by listing out what you don’t want. Sure it narrows down the options but isn’t actually accomplishing anything descriptive. You don’t know what you want because you don’t really know yourself.
As a skeptic, it is natural for me to question the legitimacy of everything. I could be given a gift wrapped with a bow and in the back of my mind I would wonder if this is a cruel joke rather than just accept it. If I won the lottery, I would become paranoid of the hidden agendas in other people rather than take things at face value. Most things in life are not tailored to individuals but created by generalizations and assumptions. What I think I’ve been learning so far this year is that getting what you want is not a recipe for contentment. It does the opposite. You’re left with more holes and voids to fill. Be careful what you ask for because you just might get it.
Vsauce has a cool youtube video where he addresses the question of what the resolution of the human eye is. It’s fascinating when you think about tv’s and phones having many millions of pixels where your eye can’t distinguish any greater detail. I remember when I first saw a high definition video while working at Best Buy. It blew me away how sharp the image was. When I saw golf and football in HD, I couldn’t get over how the blades of grass were distinct and clear. Having this level of detail in the palm of your hand blows my mind. Can you remember the first time looking through a microscope?
While thinking about yesterday’s post, I was wondering what happens if you don’t know what to look for when taking a look at one of your friendships? It’s like you don’t know what you don’t know. How do you know whether you’re seeing things clearly enough in the first place to spot an issue? Speaking about mould, if my windows were black it would’ve taken me longer to discover it. Without a doubt, it is complicated but not impossible. Showing me an image that’s has a higher resolution than what my eyes can detect sounds impossible but it’s already here.
Honesty is scary. But it’s the critical ingredient to moving beyond the surface. Honesty is high definition intimacy. You will see things that you didn’t expect to find. Take for example faces; there’s a lot more attention to covering up blemishes and effective lighting now that cameras are picking up incredible detail. I guess it’s the price of reality. We all want real connection and genuine care but that doesn’t come free and isn’t easy.
I’m guessing the windows in our house are about 10yrs old and the sealing has likely deteriorated over time allowing the cold air in. When it mixes with warm air, it condenses and when you throw in organics like dust, the end result is surface mould. If it’s kept clean and under control, there’s little danger but when it gets out of control, the spores present a major health risk. All of this can be dealt with through keeping it dry and cleaning it regularly. Better yet, proper maintenance with sealing the cracks is key.
It’s a lot like relationships. I could go off on a lot of tangents here. The easiest is how most people discover problems through toxic byproducts like mould. How do I know my windows need some work? The condensation build up and spotty black mould. If I didn’t see that crap, I would assume all is good with the windows and I don’t have to do anything. The fact is that regular maintenance can never hurt. I could replace the old caulking around the windows. But I’m reactive, especially in relationships. How is it that I am surprised when a friend snaps at me for saying something I thought was harmless? How long has this issue been building up?
Relationship maintenance isn’t something you can learn from the internet. You have to examine things with an open mind; maybe things aren’t perfectly sealed and I’ve failed to do what I should be doing. You can ignore the mould but it doesn’t resolve itself. It gets worse. When you go in and look at the relationship, don’t go looking for symptoms of problems but ask the other person if they see anything that might need attention. It’s risky because you could find something you weren’t expecting.
When I was young, I hated boots. It stemmed from having winter boots that would fill up with snow and freeze my feet even though they weren’t supposed to. On top of that, rain boots gave me blisters all the time and also made my feet soak in rainwater. I thought that these things I have to put on my feet are supposed to be good but are uncomfortable and just overall disappointing. I wanted to wear my running shoes all the time to avoid those pesky boots. For the record, I wore shoes all through high school.
Fast forward 20 years and I get nauseous when I see women in high heels and skinny ankles. I’ve seen ladies at work have a minor slip and struggle to keep their balance. And the thought of breaking ankles makes me want to throw up. On youtube there’s these funny videos of models on the catwalk looking like they’re walking on their ankles right before falling. Funny but gross. When boots returned to be fashionable, it really was a relief to now have the ankles covered up. For the record, I still avoid wearing boots myself yet hypocritically insist my son wear them when the weather is cold or wet.
A couple years ago my wife found a pair of boots that looked good and, more importantly, were actually comfortable. This is a rare phenomenon in the universe. Women go through a lot to look good at the expense of pain. She was disappointed when one of the insides of the boots ripped and is on a quest to see if Nine West will do anything. I am quite impressed with how many shoe stores there are in the average shopping mall. Yet, it’s like a diamond in the rough when a woman finds comfortable, attractive footwear. I do appreciate the struggle women go through because boots are made for more than walking… it’s the making of a miracle.
A couple weeks ago I was driving to a friends house and the weather went from sunny to blizzard within 30mins. It was incredible to hit a wall of snow. I heard all the warnings on the radio and was as prepared as I could be. The change was so quick and delineated that I don’t think my brain fully processed it.
I think that’s what death will be like. Whether I die suddenly from a heart attack or slowly over time, that moment of crossing the threshold will be quick and distinct. Much like the division between the air and sea. Everything will be different and it’s just all going to be shocking. Nothing can prepare you for that surprise. When I think about my son’s birth, it’s like an instant switch to the environment outside of the womb. Not matter what it’s a shocker and nothing fully prepares you. I think once we can accept that, death takes on a whole different perspective as something that’s just down the highway.
I’m the last generation to have known cars that didn’t have a clock. When my dad came home with a new 1986 Toyota Cressida sedan, I remember taking note of the clock. His previous car was a Buick Century and it didn’t have a clock. It’s incredible to think that people used to rely on their wristwatch for keeping track of time rather than their smartphone. Time was important enough to put in the car that it took up space in the dash somewhere and drew some battery power. In fact there are cars that make the clock a focal point. But we are getting to the point where clocks don’t matter in cars. In fact, now time is everywhere. My kitchen has 4 clocks in it on appliances and the radio. And when we all eat together, 2 more clocks from our phones add to it.
I’ve had to work with my wife to better define what “on time” and “late” means. With all the clocks available, there isn’t any excuse to not knowing the time. We really are in an age where time management is a critical life skill and teaching each other is what’s been missing. For example, could you give me a simple answer to “what is time?” What does time mean to you?
There are theories out there that go from time being a constant element of the universe to not existing at all. However we all experience time and there is proof that our individual experiences are relative and different. It’s some pretty cool stuff that I still can’t get my head around.
For me, time isn’t money or constant. It’s a measurement but more so a gift that shouldn’t be wasted.
Not all wheels are the same. In fact, most people don’t know that wheels and tires are different things. To set the record straight, you put tires on wheels (also known as rims). Wheels come in different sizes and the most noticeable is the number of bolts on it. There are 1, 4, 5, and even 6 bolts for certain cars. Another key measurement is the centre bore diameter which varies. So you can’t go into a store and ask for a 5-bolt wheel; there’s a whole lot more to specify.
One of the toughest things for every man is discovering failure due to a measurement error. Whether you’re building or fixing something, it’s critical to “measure twice, cut once.” I’ve made that mistake way too many times.
But the same holds true in life. We tend to guess at the standard to which others measure us by. Sometimes we don’t want to hear that we’re setup for failure right from the get go. Other times, we don’t fully comprehend what it is we need to do or be to succeed. I think that’s why employers are big on setting goals that are “SMART” but really are useless in my opinion. Setting a goal is good, but trying to make it ‘achievable’ or ‘time-based’ can get way too detailed that you don’t even get started. Still having the conversation with your spouse or parent is part of that measuring exercise. I often feel like I don’t measure up to standards for family and friends… but when I think about it, I’ve never actually found out whether I’ve failed them in any way. It’s rather strange that I’m the type of person that has set too high of a standard for myself that I’ve sabotaged relationships. I’ve got to remember that not all people are the same… some of us have more than 4 or 5 nuts rolling around.