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Some wise man once said that the only thing that is constant in our lives is change.  This wise man, probably some money-hungry consultant out hustling for work, interestingly was probably right.  In our lives, or more appropriately, in my life, I have seen so many things change.  And whilst I would like to think that most of the changes we have experienced are positive ones, the reality is that they are not better or worse, just different.

Take this for an example.  I was just doing some research for an upcoming business piece I am writing.  If I would have been writing this stuff years ago, I would have trudged off to the library to get the information I was after, but today I just Googled what I was after and 32-kazillion links flashed onto my computer screen (something else we didn’t have all that many years ago.  As I was gleaning the links, I saw a news-story about a new discovery by the Hubble Telescope.  Shoot, I can remember when I had a telescope.  With a relatively whimpy 4” barrel, my telescope was able to, on a clear night, see thousands of little white twinkling stars in the night sky.  And now we have the Hubble doo-wah machine sitting God-knows how far way in space in some loopy earth orbit, seeing stuff that, according to the story, is 63 light-years away from Earth (which according to my understanding, is really far).

I was damn-near exhausted after reading how some scientists found methane and water in the atmosphere of some turbo-distant planet, especially when one of the scientists who had analysed the discovery was quoted as saying that the discovery was “a crucial stepping stone to eventually characterising pre-biotic molecules on planets where life exists.”   Right.  The article continued by mentioning that one expert ‘praised the work but said she would want more proof.”  Really?  Gee. 

Even though I was a bit interested in the real message behind the article, I decided that if I kept reading about changes of that magnitude, I might hurt my slowly turning-to-mush brain, so I began to do something else.  I was going to go outside to enjoy the day, but I thought if I did this, then I would feel compelled to tell you all about it, and I have been told that my never-ending references to the weather here are not that exciting to read about so I won’t. (about 21c, sunny, a few light clouds…no big change there)

I suppose I could have embarked on some massive artistic project.  I like art projects.  They stimulate my thinking – what the scope of the project is; how best to accomplish it; what resources I need to apply to the project; and how all of humanity will be better off by my contribution to the world of art.  But it didn’t take long for me to realise that I didn’t have any 15cm diameter white PVC tubing on hand, so I scrapped that idea for now.  

Pondering my options, I thought; I reflected; I wondered how best to utilise a day off in Mallorca.  The stores are all closed, so I had to come up with some project that I could do with stuff I had around the house.  With Dusty Springfield wafting throughout Sol y Mar, I finally hit on what I should do.  I would chuck the whole idea of doing something creative and go to lunch.

After returning home, I began to think more about the whole change thing.  It does seem a bit overrated I believe.  So things change.  So we change.  So everything changes.  So what.  Okay, maybe some of the changes we experience may not be all that great.  Maybe some of them can actually be shattering experiencs in our lives that leave us gutted.  But as another wise person once told me, 'Don't worry about things you can't control.' 

Well, here is a partial list of things I can and cannot control.  I can make choices of where to live (big tick there), what I do to make money (big tick there), what I eat (hey, I have moved on from my cereal and yoghurt days so that deserves a tick), and how I view the world.  I can't control the actions of others (no shit), the weather (so I have chosen to live where I live), or the ageing process.

I know some people who desperatly want to revert back to a previous age, and I know some people who don't seem to give a dogs bollocks about what age they are.  Personally, I wouldn't want to go back in time.  I am pretty content with who I am and where I am in the big scheme of things.  Yes, there are some things I would have wished to see turn out differently, but to quote a card I received once, right now, the only sensible thing is to 'do what you can, where you are, with what you have.

Having said that, it is too bad I don't have any of those big white PVC tubes laying around.

 

rescuing my brother from the evil inner-tube

 

picking up shirts at the hand-laundry

 

when yellow glasses and serious moustaches were in order

 

last Christmas

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copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, James B. Rieley

jbrieley@rieley.com