The little device chimed. He knew he had another email, but he was in the middle of the project and couldn’t stop.
The little device dinged. That was a news bulletin.
“Sorry, world,” he said. “I’m busy,” but his tone was pleading.
Now the device blooped. It was a text.
He stared. Everyone he knew knew he was in the middle of a project and couldn’t be disturbed except in an emergency. He probably shouldn’t have thrown in the “except in an emergency”; it gave people a loophole.
He picked up the device and the screen lit up.
“You busy?” said the text.
He rolled his eyes and typed, “Knee deep in the project.”
“Oh, sorry,” said the text. And then: “I forgot.”
He sighed. He went back and checked the email. And the news bulletin.
And an hour later, the project deadline passed. When they came to collect the project, no one was in the room, but the device glowed contentedly. He had vanished.
“His phone’s here and open; maybe that will say where he went.” She picked up the phone and vanished, too.
Life is about enduring to the sunset,
attempting to thrive until the sunset –
because the night is dark
and you’ll need light, and food, and shelter
to make it to the sunrise.
No one is guaranteed a sunset.
But probably, you’ll be there when the sun goes down.
Your days are probably numbered in the tens of thousands.
So make this day worthwhile
so you can rest tonight and think,
“That was a good day,”
so a week from now you can rest and think,
“That was a good week,”
And “That was a good month,”
And “That was a good year.”
All in all, it’s a good life.
There they sit, stacked on the credenza I keep clearing and then cluttering up again – Mark Twain, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Walt Whitman, A. Conan Doyle, Ray Bradbury – Thomas Jefferson, Ernie Pyle, Paul Harvey, Elmer Davis – S.I. Hayakawa – voices that have spoken to me long ago, far away, here, and now.
How long have I longed to join them, to be able to assemble words that move the soul so – move the soul where? to action? to understanding? to agreement? or just for show and tell? “Look what I found!” Look what I saw! Look what I heard today!
“Just” show and tell?
Show and tell is how we impart knowledge, how we learn, how we teach.
Something discovered is shared, and something inside thinks, “Oh! That’s how it all connects.” “Oh! That’s where that piece fits.” “Oh! I think I finally understand another bit of the universe.”
We live for the Oh!s. And in sharing, we join the flow, the wisdom of the ages.
These are the good old days.
These are the days when the blood pumps so strong with the rhythm and the power and the glory of life, when what we share throbs with urgency and what’s inside needs to get out.
When we’re old and gray we would remember these days with fondness, but we’ll never be old and gray, our limbs will be strong and our lives will stay like this forever – that’s how powerful it feels.
And, stopping to rest near the end of days, this memory will sustain us …
Submitted for your approval, the final words that Doctor Who uttered while in a body that resembled the actor Peter Capaldi. These nearly four months later, I’m still not convinced that truer words have ever been said:
“Oh, there it is: Silly old universe. The more I save it, the more it needs saving. It’s a treadmill! Yes, yes, I know they’ll get it all wrong without me …
Well, I suppose … one more lifetime won’t kill anyone. Well, except me.
You wait a moment, Doctor. Let’s get it right. I’ve got a few words to say to you. Basic stuff first:
Never be cruel. Never be cowardly. And never eat pears!
Remember: Hate is always foolish. Love is always wise.
Always try to be nice, and never fail to be kind.
Oh, and you mustn’t tell anyone your name. No one would understand it anyway, except – except – children. Children can hear it. Sometimes, if their hearts are in the right place and the stars are, too, children can hear your name. But nobody else. Nobody else. Ever.
Laugh hard! Run fast! Be kind!
Doctor … I let you go.”
(From “Twice Upon a Time,” written by Steven Moffat)
Do you feel that, smell that, hear the sound of your lungs filling? Take it all in, all of that air filled with icicles or sunshine or cut grass and lilacs – fill every corner of your lungs – that’s it, breathe in, keep going, those miraculous balloons have a lot of space.
Now: All that is inside you, from every corner of your soul, let it go! Send it winging to its next destination. Share who you are and what you are and make the world a better place. You have so much to to offer us; you have an entire universe of life to share that never was before and never will be again once you’re gone.
Reading an essay about the legendary rebel Malcolm Reynolds, a thought occurs to me about war and rebellion and human nature.
“I must write about that,” I says to myself, I says, “after I finish reading.”
But when I finish reading, the insight eludes me like the plot of a memorable dream. I scan through the essay again, hoping the words will re-ignite my imagination, but the thought is gone.
Next time, I guess, I’ll leave pen and paper nearby.
But I always have pen and a pad in my shirt pocket.
Next time, I guess, I’ll stop and pull out the pen and paper.
Stop what you’re doing and memorialize that random thought, else it returns to wherever it came from.