We are alert to danger because our survival depends upon it.
But there is more to life than danger.
There is singing.
And looking at the sky.
And chewing on a blade of grass.
Have you done any of those things recently?
They call to you from beyond your window.
Sing a song.
Pluck a blade of grass.
Hold it high.
Take a selfie.
Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
and he will email you something in return.
Be sure to tell Indy what song you sang.
You can afford to stop for 5 minutes.
I promise you won’t get in trouble.
Don’t just agree with me in your mind.
Take a literal walk to the literal outdoors.
Pick a literal blade of grass.
Take a literal, ridiculous selfie.
Literally send it to Indy.
It will help you re-establish perspective.
Now, more than ever, we need to cheer ourselves up.
I will not name the things that are bringing us down.
Too much has been spoken about them already.
Do you remember the story of Chicken Little? An acorn falls on his head and he goes ripping through the village screaming that the sky is falling.
He gets everyone all worked up.
Did you know that story was 500 years old when Jesus walked the earth? It’s listed under Aarne-Thompson-Uther1 type 20C, which are folktales that make light of paranoia and mass hysteria.
We are surrounded by Chicken Littles.
On page 226 of Where Have All the Leaders Gone?, Lee Iacocca talks about his father.
“When I was worried about something, he’d prod me. ‘Lido, do you remember what was on your mind a year ago?’ And I’d say, ‘How could I remember? A lot of things happen in a year.’ He’d pull out some notes with a flourish, and say, ‘I have it written down.’ Then he’d proceed to tell me about something that had made me unhappy a year ago, and deliver the punch line: ‘You can’t even remember it now.’”
Pluck a blade of grass.
Hold it up and sing a song and I promise that a year from now you’ll smile when you remember doing it. But you won’t be able to remember the name of today’s Chicken Little, or the particular acorn that has him so terribly frightened.
I think I’ll have chicken for dinner.
Roy H. Williams
1 The Aarne–Thompson classification systems are indices used to classify folktales:
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