Thursday, May 13, 2010

Make It Work

Some of the world's greatest feats were accomplished by people not smart enough to know they were impossible.

Doug Larson
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I have written in the past about Mr. O' Conner, the elementary school science teacher who scorned me in class by strongly and authoritatively announcing that man could never fly to the moon or even into outer space.

Then there was Mrs. Coleman, the sixth grade teacher who called me a liar in front of the whole class because I said I liked to watch the UN proceedings on TV. If the UN was in session channel 13 in New York would broadcast it with no editorializing and with the simultaneous English translation when needed. I found it fascinating. And I learned a lot of things about other countries and the world. But a mere 12 year old boy could not possibly prefer to watch the UN instead of Howdy Doody. Right? I think I saw Howdy Doody once, maybe twice. That was enough for me.

If the UN was not in session there was the Buster Crabbe playhouse and that meant Buck Rogers and Flash Gorden (speaking of outer space). And on Saturday afternoons I listened to the opera broadcasts. (Hey, Mrs. Coleman, I must be lying about that too, don't you think?)

I can't remember learning anything from elementary school, which isn't strange considering. I learned more from my friends. Bobby and I put together a puppet theatre and made puppets and marionettes out of found objects. We went around to playgrounds and other schools putting on shows even though we were told we couldn't.

One day I climbed a brick wall because a friend said it couldn't be done.

There's a well known anecdote about Orson Welles when he first went to Hollywood. It's seems a lot of the film artists and technicians lined up to work for him, for as one of them put it, he didn't know what he couldn't do. There's a famous sequence in one of his films where the camera pans through a window that is being rained on into the room below. It couldn't be done. Welles was obviously not smart enough to know that. So the film crew did it.

Search for the invisible. Listen for the inaudible. Imagine the unimaginable.
Do the impossible.

DB - The Vagabond
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SPRING QUESTION
(This is not a contest.)

In your opinion what is the most amazing thing that could happen during this decade? Make it as outrageous as you want but keep it within the realm of what you consider a possibility.

Only 7 responses so far.

Answers will be published the first day of Summer.

Thank you.

dbdacoba@aol.com

DB
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5 comments:

pacifica62 said...

This entry is inspiring db. I like the Larson quote too. You know the other day I found myself thinking back to those Saturday afternoon broadcasts of the Metropolian Opera sponsored by Texaco. How sad that the teachers in your life could not have been more encouraging and supportive of your interests, but I suppose it offered the opportunity to collaborate with your friends and use your imagination. School curriculums made it very difficult to deviate from the norm in any way that could be appreciated. I find it amazing that the creative artistic types ever got to blossom and explore their potential.

DB said...

Thank you Pacifica. It was a different time with different attitudes. Post war downward thinking instead of upward. Art was a hobby not a profession. My very own sister, 13 years my senior, once said "You know, you really ought to find another type of job. It's very difficult to make a living in show business." Well it is difficult to make a living in show business but I had been doing it for about 20 years.

Big Mark 243 said...

This is a uplifiting entry. There is a Mark Twain quote about how with ignorance and determination, a person is almost assured of success.

There are always going to be someone who doubts the qualities of someone else, mainly because it falls out of the notion of what is expected. Mrs. Coleman was limited by her view of children and threatened because your watching the UN indicated an awarness of the larger world that she could not have herself.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

It is a shame when teachers preach instead of inspire. I was fortunate to have a few that inspired.

Liz said...

Correction : The worlds greatest feats were accomplished by people who were smart enough to know nothing is impossible.