Don’t just do something, sit there!
My favorite Jack Handey bit on SNL was the one where the dad and young son are walking on the beach when it starts to rain:
SON: Daddy, why is it raining?
DAD: Because God is crying.
SON: Why is God crying?
DAD: Must be something you did.
Never gets old.
1.) Because it slays me. 2.) Because that’s how I tend to operate. My default is it’s my fault.
Like the day Instagram went down. (Sorry. Too soon?) After aggressively swiping…like my phone didn’t understand my intention to look at the NEXT POST, DAMNIT, and getting the “couldn’t refresh feed” message several times, I began Googling ways to troubleshoot it.
We all probably went through similar steps but I bet most of you, after a normal period of time, texted a friend to ask if they were having the same issue, or blamed a group of cyber miscreants, or if you’re really emotionally healthy, just moved on with your life.
I, on the other hand, insisted on fixing MY problem that was MY fault.
I restarted my phone.
I sat on hold with the manufacturer of my router to go through a reset routine.
I checked my date and time settings. (It’s a thing.)
I logged in and out of Instagram.
I did a software update.
And just as I was about to uninstall and reinstall the app, I got a Twitter notice that said it was Instagram’s fault.
That never occurred to me.
Then it occurred to me that it never occurred to me and I had a moment of reckoning.
Lynda, you really need to drop the Vanilla Ice routine. (“If there was a problem, yo, I’ll solve it.”) Sometimes problems aren’t yours to solve. Or they are yours to solve, but with the help of a +1, or a team, or a whole country. And then there are times when your services are simply irrelevant…like now.
Of course, that’s the real issue. If I didn’t cause it, I can’t fix it. And I really hate not being in charge. (Ego much?)
But I will tell you, I’m getting better. Years ago, if I spotted a plane in the air, I had to keep my eyes fixed on it until it was out of sight for fear that if I looked away, it would crash. No lie. These days I let the pilots worry about that. Novel.
I’m sure it’s all some perverted form of OCD, but at least now I can name it, then pass the baton. And, as the sage Al-Anon slogan goes, “Don’t just do something, sit there!”
I guess what I’m trying to say is, not every disaster is yours to clean up, I hope your dad has a warped sense of humor, and the next time it rains, don’t look at me.
“Check out the hook while my DJ revolves it.”
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