Monday, October 04, 2004

Experience Account

The "Experience Account" is the name of a resume-posting service my college subscribes to, and I think that name holds true for a lot of things. Everyone has an "Experience Account," a list of achievements and failures and checklists and the like, the cumulative effort of all their years on the planet, living this thing called "Life." The more experience we have, be it our own or the suggestions/lessons given us by others, the better prepared we are expected to be to meet life head-on in whatever it may throw at us.
It's a big responsibility, but an even bigger assumption. How do we know that our experiences give us enough information to make an educated guess at what we're supposed to do next? How do we know that the rules stay the same? How can we use this accumulation of knowledge to anticipate life's next move and be perfectly prepared for whatever life may throw our way?
The answer? We can't.
We can't predict the future, we can only project the past and see where that might take us. Interpolation is a useful practice, but it's not 100% accurate, and the accuracy drops even further if there is information missing -- which in most cases, we won't even realize is missing. There's no road map of life that tells us where to turn or how many miles until success. That's our own responsibility, we have to find our own way.
There are many different navigators to use. God is the one I like, others use family or history or money or wealth or power or drugs or just plain guess. There's no "tried and true" method -- nobody survives life, we all die in the end, and nobody's come back and said, "Hey, look, I've been taking a poll, and here's the tips we retired 'livers' have compiled for you guys." I wish. Life would be so much easier.
Lots of things would make life easier. But I guess they wouldn't make it more interesting, or enjoyable, or rewarding. We'd miss all the little facts of life in our rush to get where we're going. I believe the destination is important, but so is the path you take there. Don't be afraid to take the scenic route, and don't be afraid to get lost or to ask for directions.
I guess all we can really hope to do is travel through life as best we can.
Nobody has the right to ask for more than your best.
I just hope that my best is enough.



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