Thursday, April 26, 2007
Big Life, Little Life
Ever notice how you can tell the size of a person's life just by looking at them? OK, that's not entirely true. You're not supposed to judge a book by its cover. But sometimes you can, and sometimes you're right. I'm usually of the mindset that bigger is better when it comes to living life. But there is also something to be said for moderation. I know one fellow who lives very LARGE, but he's also, more often than not, standing on the edge of self-destruction. Kind of the cliche of the rich boy who never grew up. Cars? Make them fast. Marriages? Make them plentiful. Food? Supersize it. Drink? Make it a double. Hedonism? Oh, yes. You just have to like him, though, because everything he does, he overdoes. And it may look like a trainwreck to some of us, but he's just so charming about it, so predictable in his excesses. And also he makes for good stories. Then there are little life people. I'd rather watch the trainwrecks any day than spend five minutes with these folks. They are stingy with everything, especially their pleasures. Mete them out a little at a time. Never enjoy anything too much. Keep your head down and barrel through life because you need to GET THERE, wherever "there" may be. (Probably Walmart, as my friend J. used to say) They are also the "I'm so busy" people. Too busy to chat with a friend or take a vacation or read a book or do anything that smacks of the dreaded RELAXATION (aka laziness). Saw a couple of little-lifers today. And I'm not just bitter because they gave my most adorable and sociable little girl the evil eye when she tried to sit at their table and talk to them. They were so full of disdain for our mess, our chaos and our boisterous, germ-filled presence. You could just see it on their faces. Once upon a time I may have been offended and given them the evil eye back, but today all I could feel was sorry that they missed their chance to smile and coo over a couple of the cutest kids you'll ever meet. Which is what MOST people do, I might add. I know, I know...not everyone likes kids and to each his own. But to be open enough to just enjoy a moment, trade a smile with another human being, regardless of small stature - now that's living large.