Opposite stories

“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation, and go to the grave with the song still in them.”

– From Walden by Henry David Thoreau

The sad and choked lives of most people, as imagined by Thoreau in the quote above, leads to the ersatz thrill seeking of super hero movies. Video games with their challenges and puzzles to solve, and people to rescue makes a good substitute for getting out of the mundane problems in life.

The real obstacles might ask too much of me. Am I really ready to quite my job? Will I have to drop everything and get that graduate degree?

It’s easier to watch a movie and get some sleep.

I’m gonna say, those stories are with us for a reason. The bards, the troubadours, and the storytellers are a deep part of who we are as human beings. That quiet desperation walks with us, and the story tellers will remind us of what is possible. One day, eventually, I might be able to get the idea that moves me out of the desperation and into a move.

And that puts me into another category altogether. Those stories that inspired me to make a move? The heroes whose exploits made me stand up and step up?

Now I’m in the midst of it. It might be time for a different kind of story. When I’m in the arena, I might want simpler fare.

There’s a different set of stories the troubadours know. Something soothing and peaceful. When real life is exciting enough, I need a story that lets me know things can be peaceful.

I’m careful with my stories. I have to be self-aware enough to know what I need. Right now, today, I need a cup of tea. Herbal.

I’m reading the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Andrew Mccall Smith. He has strung together a long series of stories to give me exactly what I’m looking for.

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