Clapping from the Curb

It's just a typical Saturday night.  As usual, I'm sitting in my chair, listening to Shawn Mullins (and by that, I mean my Glee mix) and working on that Oscar acceptance speech that I'm going to make one day thanks to The Secret.  Don't roll your eyes.  It works.  Just yesterday I was imagining in my mind how much I didn't want to get up and fix my son something to drink.  I mean I was really envisioning how much I didn't want to get off the couch...I could feel myself becoming one with the cushions.  When I opened my eyes I saw that Sam was spraying his water gun directly into his mouth.

Problem solved.  The universe came together to hydrate my son while I stayed on the couch.  That's the power of The Secret.

I was focusing this week on how hard I work at being mediocre.  Really.  I am one of those people who works just hard enough and I never set any goals.  No goals.  No work.  No disappointment.  I see no problem with this.

Furthermore, because I'm anti-goals, I tend to get annoyed with people who accomplish things.  Like really annoyed.  I hate the Rudy story.  I resent those Jamaican bobsledders.  Every time that gymnast from the 1996 Olympics shares her story of triumph, I'm all, "blah, blah, blah, blah."


All that motivation and perseverance and not taking "no" for an answer...ugh.  I just don't have it in me. 

I find that anyone who accomplishes goals, shares one of two answers to the "how" of their accomplishment.  It's one of two extremes.  They either did something really hard that I will never do, or they did something so simple that their accomplishment can only be credited to a complete and total fluke...and flukes don't happen to me.

I call it, "I would never go to all that trouble" vs. "This would never happen to me"

For example, when I was young, I read Where the Red Fern Grows. 

Don't cry, I'm only going to talk about the beginning of the book.

That boy saved up for like a year for those dogs.  After I read that, I thought, "That is a great story of working hard for what you really want. I should be more like that." Sadly, the truth about me is, I would never save up for a year for dogs.  I would probably have tried.  I might have even made an envelope for it a la Dave Ramsey and hidden it in my Wonderfile, but the truth is I would have raided that Redbone Coonhound hunting dog fund as soon as I heard about an upcoming Kohls 3-day event without even a twinge of guilt.  In short, I would never go to all that trouble.

An example of a fluke would be the guy that found two abandoned Redbone Coonhound hunting dogs in an abandoned well with tags on that bore the address of his own house, and this would never happen to me. 

Yes, I had to Google the breed of dog in the book, but that's so not the point.  Pay attention because here are some accomplishments and the two annoying extreme secrets to their achievements that I feel like happen to everyone else.

You might ask...
How did you get that dream job?

I would never go to all this trouble...
 "I went to school for 15 years, then took an $8/hour job and slowly worked my way up by tackling 90 hour weeks and babysitting my bosses kids on weekends for free.  I also incorporated regular meditation cycles and studied the power of positive thinking."

This would never happen to me...
"So weird. The CEO is one of my Twitter followers. 

You might ask...
How did you write that book?

I would never go to all this trouble... 
"I lived in a Super 8 for like three years eating nothing but Spam and drinking sweet tea while crying nonstop and forcing myself to write.  It was painful and I had no hot water and was on a shaving strike until it was finished, but I finally got it done and in three more years of doing nothing but sending query letters and making phone calls, someone finally wanted to publish it."  

This would never happen to me...
"I was clipping coupons when an idea hit me and I just started writing and didn't stop until my kids got up from their nap 49 minutes later and I was done.  I had an interested publisher on the phone before I was done making dinner." 

You might ask...
How do you make so much money working from home?

I would never go to all this trouble...
"I am up at 3AM every morning making sales calls.  I stop only for bathroom breaks and make calls straight through until midnight.  It's so worth it to stay in your pajamas." 

This would never happen to me...
"I received a seven figure settlement when I was eleven."

You might ask...
How did you win the lottery?

I would never go to all this trouble...
"I have spent $75 on the lottery every week for the last 25 years.  It finally paid off."  

This would never happen to me...
"I didn't even remember that I had bought a ticket when I found it in my coat pocket two days after the numbers were called."

You might ask...
How did you lose weight?

I would never go to all this trouble...
"I did interval workouts for 4 hours at a time with 7 minutes of rest between in 22 hour cycles for 30 days...stopping only 2 hours to sleep.  I also I had to change my diet to include only lemon water and communion wafers."

This would never happen to me...
"I gave up Peeps.  It was crazy. It all just melted off."

This alone motivates me to continue my unbroken streak of mediocrity.  Besides, as Will Rogers once said, "We can't all be heroes because somebody has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by."

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