A few months ago I came to the surface. Crawling onto dry land up out of the breakers, my lungs and stomach puking up salt water. My one hope; that this was solid, stable ground to catch and draw my breath. What does terra firma mean to me if I have learnt anything? It’s the opportunity to start afresh, each step controlled and measured in movement and result. I might yet fly again, my belongings in a knotted cloth tied to the stick over my shoulder whilst I step off the cliff once more.
It is little wonder The Octopus at the fairground was the one that made me puke the most. It was the one ride that I could not even watch. Four long arms rotating above the ground like the skeleton of a painted carousel and under each of those arms was suspended a similar but smaller spinning frame to which the chairs were attached. A spirograph of vomitus.
I never liked the merry-go-round, painted or otherwise, and I never will. That just goes around. Nothing. Now, you get more out of a roller coaster. But even so, that can become sickeningly repetitive once you’ve been around enough times. That’ll get me swallowing back the contents of my stomach after a few times around too. Birds do a better job of regurgitating and they’re the ones flying? Where’s my jet pack!
It’s being worked on though – the jet pack that is – and although it may be closer to Daedalus’ wings it is no less impressive. But learnt experience is what matters as we use that technology. I find the best way to experience this is full screen, standing up with arms out stretched, like the center figure in Vitruvius’ man.
It would make a fine presentation in any boardroom and then fed to all. I’m ever the professional entertainer but it takes a Fool to actually jump at the risk to learn something new. So many process improvement training workshops, annuatim perpetuis, through which we sit with similarly inspirational video and pep-talk. Yet, they so frequently become another spaghetti test; maybe it’ll stick this time. One misses the point if one fails to examine the unexpected results, neither heeding or using what has been understood. The voice at the end of the video say how little one needs to move – just an inch – to see a difference. Consider what it takes to get there; an inch. Standing still or doing the same thing over and over again. They’re the same thing without an inch.
Corporations thrive on the economy of influence and that is how they stay afloat. It’s not good or bad in principal but in practice it matters; success or failure. That risk, if understood, generates value in its fluctuations. The scratched clay slate, parchment, encyclopedia, library and index. I tend to give metaphysical presentations, layers within layers. It turns me into a trickster among thieves or a distraction for the delighted depending on who the audience is. Heckling is a cooperative effort and there are professionals on all sides who want to join in.
I always feel like the carpetbagger when I am doing a presentation. It terrifies me that I look ridiculous and the laughter is nothing more than embarrassed cynicism but not nearly as terrifying as the alternative; saying nothing at all. Time is our most precious resource and we have to choose wisely where we invest it. Being the juggler eases the message into an act within an act. I play the part and I appreciate my hecklers, some of them deservedly so. They are the ones who’ll stand up with their arms wide open.
Don’t forget Daedalus kept on flying.