Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Who Cares About The Next....................... ?

The renowned William James was speaking of men who had never found themselves when he declared that the average man develops only ten per cent of his latent mental abilities. "Compared to what we ought to be," he wrote, "we are only half awake. We are making use of only a small part of our physical and mental resources. Stating the thing broadly, the human individual thus lives far within his limits. He possesses powers of various sorts which he habitually fails to use." (Dale Carnegie - How To Stop Worrying And Start Living Chapter 16)

Let me tell you how I come up with some of my topics. I listen to enough talk radio that when enough people bring up the same thing I tend to come up with my own reaction. All I hear about today : Is Rory McIlroy the next Tiger?? The guy won his first major at 22. First of all really hard to do. He lapped the field in a major tournament. Enjoy the moment and maybe he will be very consistent or maybe he will flame out or somewhere in between.

The problem with us is we can't let performers be themselves. God gives us all different talents. And we can all be different. It's our fault that we tend to shortcut and undercut appreciating people by giving them a label. When I was a lot younger, Harold Miner was supposed to be Baby Jordan. How many of you remember him????

We saw that problem in quite recently in basketball with Dirk Nowitsky. Everybody insisted on comparing him to Larry Bird. Just because he is a tall white guy with an outside shot. The thing was Larry is Larry and Dirk was Dirk.

Of course this shortcut lazy guy thinking is not confined to sports. Bob Dylan was a phenomenon in the sixties. His longevity lasts to this day. I have a book somewhere around here called the book of Rock Lists. In it they had all the singer/ songwriters tagged as the new Dylan. I wish I could reproduce the list here but if you can remember the 70s, almost anybody who was better than David Cassidy and Donny Osmond was on it. Among them two of my absolute favorites. Randy Newman and Bruce Springsteen. You can read my past blogs how I feel about Bruce and Randy but just know neither was Bob Dylan. Both were fine being themselves. They were not Dylan copycats. Both got away from the cliche love lyrics and took chances.

You have heard the advice a zillion times: be yourself. Well, let me quote Dale Carnegie again. Since only he can put it this way:

You and I have such abilities, so let's not waste a second worrying because we are not like other people. You are something new in this world. Never before, since the beginning of time, has there ever been anybody exactly like you; and never again throughout all the ages to come will there ever be anybody exactly like you again. The new science of genetics informs us that you are what you are largely as a result of twenty-four chromosomes contributed by your father and twenty-four chromosomes contributed by your mother. These forty-eight chromosomes comprise everything that determines what you inherit. In each chromosome there may be, says Amran Sheinfeld, "anywhere from scores to hundreds of genes -with a single gene, in some cases, able to change the whole life of an individual." Truly, we are "fearfully and wonderfully" made.

Even after your mother and father met and mated, there was only one chance in 300,000 billion that the person who is specifically you would be born! In other words, if you had 300,000 billion brothers and sisters, they might have all been different from you. Is all this guesswork? No. It is a scientific fact. If you would like to read more about it, go to your public library and borrow a book entitled You and Heredity, by Amran Scheinfeld.

See? Scientifically proof that you are unique and that uniqueness should be celebrated and developed. Be yourself. Comparisons may be inevitable but do your best to see something for what they uniquely are. Stop looking for the next..... Granted the scariest thing I can possibly think of is the next Ed Lopez.

Ed (Springsteen)

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