Monday, January 15, 2007

Keeping Things In Perspective

Many times in life things are not what they appear. Sometimes they are actually just the exact opposite of what they initially appear. Sales and marketing people take advantage of this phenomenon when they imply and spin. They think that they are not being dishonest, but their perception is distorted.

I have made many mistakes over the last half a century and in many cases these mistakes were caused because things were not what they appeared initially. This certainly applies to each of my three marriages. Many, no probably most of the conflicts I have been involved in were largely caused by me or the other party or in some cases both of us holding a distorted picture of what the reality of the situation was.

Certainly anyone who never makes any mistakes isn’t doing anything.

But one can try to avoid many errors in life by taking more time in making decisions. Sleep on it. Take a few breaths before answering, etc.

Another piece of good advice comes from Kurt Cobain’s wife. Despite her unconventionality I recently heard her say, “Good manners don’t cost anything.” In other words, it is generally inappropriate and harmful to your cause to be rude. Or as my mother used to say, “You can catch more bees with honey than with vinegar.”

Recently I had to hike over some railroad tracks to get near to a bird wildlife refuge. I was going over there to try and take a few pictures of the thousands of aquatic birds. And as I crossed over the tracks I saw this amazing example of the illusion of parallel railroad tracks appearing to touch upon reaching infinity.