Friday, May 21, 2010

Unknown Places

With the aid of basic experience we must leap bravely into the future.

Russell McIntyre
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I am an uneducated man. No, I really am. The last thing I learned in a class room was in high school when Mr. Bush taught me that a writer very carefully chooses the words to express an idea or describe an event. That words are precise things was a mind opening thing to me, and it also taught me that the mansion of education, knowledge, wisdom and experience was an infinite one and I was only a beggar at the door.

One of life's lessons is about learning "the ropes" not just about things, but about people. I took a temp job one summer for an organization that raised money for a college. My boss showed me how she wanted the job done. So I went to work. I soon found a faster and more efficient way of doing it. She came by to look and snapped at me for not doing it her way. So I went back to it. Two days later she came by and snapped at me for not finding a betterm way of doing it. I learned that some people are just plain irrational and that's that. Fortunately I didn't have to stay there long.

When I started to work full time in theatre I was an apprentice. I learned the ropes, how to build and paint scenery, to hang and focus lights, to run a patch panel, to collect and fix props, even to repair costumes. When I became a union actor I no longer had to do that work and could settle down into the task of learning the craft of acting which I continued to do up until the day I retired, and perhaps I'm still learning it.

As an actor I again discovered the use and value of words. But as the words had to be backed up with thoughts and feelings I was also becoming acquainted with the spinning worlds behind the words, the worlds of the characters who spoke those words. I learned there was more to every human being than what appeared.

My experience as an actor taught me the dangers of artificiality, superficiality and exclusivity. I learned the power of ideas and how rational humans carry those ideas from year to year, from century to century.

Best of all, I learned that when we reach the limits of our experience and the wisdom gained from it we are standing at the entrance to a dark jungle or the edge of a sheer cliff. There are more ropes to learn. We must know there is something beyond that cliff even though we can't see it. We must have the faith to know that if we step off there will be something there that holds our feet. Armed with our individual experiences and life lessons we must go bravely on into a future for which we don't yet have the wisdom.

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 8 responses so far.

Answers will be published the first day of Summer.

Thank you.

dbdacoba@aol.com

DB - The Vagabond
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3 comments:

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

Good thing we can never reach the limits of wisdom.

pacifica62 said...

As someone who is deathly afraid of heights, it would take an awful lot of faith for me to jump off a sheer cliff. In fact, I just cannot see it ever happening. If I step into the future it will be with well planned baby steps or unknowingly by accident. My days of adrenaline rushes and wreckless adventure are all but over and sadly that limits my growth and education. I do what I can but usually safely and cautiously.

DB said...

Pacifica, you are on the correct edge. "Death defying" leaps are almost always carefully and cautiously done, well planned, well thought out, well equipped and well rehearsed