Friday, January 21, 2011

The Opportunity Express

Opportunity knocks. But it really doesn't. It's actually a Conductor there to say there's a Train for you at the metaphorical Train Station, ready to take you to a greater destination. All that's left for you to do is get to the station and climb aboard.

Well, Opportunity didn't knock. I saw the Conductor coming and raced to the Train Station to await the longed for "All aboard!"

I sat on the platform admiring the Train. But I wasn't called aboard; it was desolate of a crew.

I picked my fingernails and gave the Train anxious glances. But I wasn't called aboard.

I began securing all the cars for their departure: checking that they were each properly latched to the other, and then in turn to the Engine.

I began gathering wood to feed the fire.

But I wasn't called aboard.

I opened the furnace, to check its heat. I stoked the fire. I added more wood. I adjusted the coals. I let more air in and still more wood and still more air and I stoked it till my brow bled sweat and all it amounted to was the explosion of the Engine. I did not ensure the Train would leave with me as a giddy passenger. I ensure that the Train would never leave, regardless of my being on board. I left the Train desolate, to be dragged away and recycled for other Opportunity Trains of people strong enough to wait.

And who's to say, in but a moment's time, the Conductor would have tipped me his hat. Who's to say he'd have bellow "All aboard!" and taken my hand as I mounted the steps.

Who's to say the Train was truly going to leave, but my exuberant human nature brought me to forcing Fate and destroying that destination. And perhaps the Train would have taken me somewhere only to shortly pick me up and return me to my original standing, the only difference being my minutely wiser outlook toward similar situations. Or perhaps that Train was one of two much larger Trains, and the passage on either affects life's outcome immensely. Perhaps I destroyed the better option.

Or perhaps the Engine isn't in fiery ruin.

Perhaps it just needs a little more wood.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Life is an hourglass glued to the table

Well, as you may or may not recall, my last post was on my "golden year" being a year of change and moving on. It seems that twas not the only thing this year shall be. I read my darling Jason Mraz's blog a week or so back (see www.freshnessfactorfivethousand.blogspot.com should you care to taste his literate fruits) and he said his New Years resolution was to live in the now: to forget the past, the future, to take the 'new' and make it all 'now.' Then he wished all reading a Happy 'Now' Year.

I thought that was wise of him. Now Year... It's been going through my head the last few weeks. And today, a new semester started, and in Yoga Jan explained we will learn to focus and live in the present, to forget the past and live in the now. Yoga is wishing me a Happy 'Now' Year. And again, in Creative Writing after lunch, Mrs. Sides (on speaking on rapid-writes) explained to write what you feel right now. Whatever happened at lunch is in the past. It's "digesting." Write in the now. Happy 'Now' Year.

So, I suppose all I'm saying is at first I took Mraz's message as a quaint play-on-words to someday evoke in my life, but I suppose Fate is telling me it's yet another aspect of my 'golden year'. Living in the present, focusing on the task at hand. Finally learning that this life isn't a dress rehearsal, which is a harden lesson to learn that it appears. Even to a theatre nerd the phrase doesn't quite work. Why? Because--I learned during Cinderella--not do I only take the metaphorical performance of Life as a dress rehearsal, but I also take the very solid, very real stage performances as mere practices.

Always. I cannot remember a show up until West Side Story where I knew the choreography at an average, fluid level by opening night. Two years before I had succeeded in learning the Act One Final in Suessical the Musical Jr. on closing night. Needless to say, if you ask me to dance it now I'll merely look at you until you are awkwarded from my presence.

And I found myself delaying my grasp of the Stepmother's character up until the final curtain. Yes, I knew her well by dress rehearsals. Yes, she was the greatest, strongest roll I've played to date. But yes, I could have discovered a whole new dimension to her, but I didn't. Because somehow I'm wired to think the time will come later for me to do so.

I'm thankful this golden year is teaching me the pleasure of the present. I should have learned this lesson--metaphorical and literal--years ago. But I'm glad Fate is pitying my thick mortal mind and is instructing me properly to be better.

Now, let me fully embark on my Golden Now Year.