I guess I’m not the only one who is sitting at home, watching the world go by and thinking: life is pretty weird right now.
Watching virtual concerts and binge watching Netflix series is fine, but you see a nation in meltdown, storming their capital city’s buildings, everyone running scared of a virus and virtual currencies investments going through the roof and some of us – me – thinking this world is mad.
I remember the plague and the American civil war …
… a tweet from 1865?
… nope, 2021 pic.twitter.com/wyfiRicHyj
— Chris Skinner (@Chris_Skinner) January 7, 2021
Stop the world, I want to get off.
If you don’t know this line, it’s from a 1960s West End play by Anthony Newley. Or try another great line:
I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore.
That line is from a 1976 movie called Network.
I’m showing my age, but these lines demonstrate the feelings we have today are nothing new. People throughout history have felt the way we do today.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
A tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens. 1859
Amazing how prescient a piece written by a man almost two centuries ago. But then go back further.
This day is called the feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say ‘To-morrow is Saint Crispian:’
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars.
And say ‘These wounds I had on Crispin’s day.’
Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember with advantages
What feats he did that day
Henry V, William Shakespeare (1599)
Time shows that humans have always been challenged by our world. Our world is not an easy one. We live in it and, maybe for decades, we survive and even thrive.
“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen”
Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, 1917
But then we reflect and ponder. I look back at my life and think that finance and family have been the two driving factors throughout my career. Which comes first? Which is higher priority?
“No man should bring children into the world who is unwilling to persevere to the end in their nature and education.”
Plato, 427-327 BC
I guess we just always have to come back to reality.
Still don’t know what I was waitin’ for
And my time was runnin’ wild
A million dead end streets and
Every time I thought I’d got it made
It seemed the taste was not so sweet
David Bowie, Changes, 1971
Bottom line is this: today is another day. The world is different. The world has changed. You can fight it and lose; or you can embrace it and win. It’s up to you.
Life is what happens while we are making other plans.
Allen Saunders, 1957 (wrongly attributed to John Lennon)