Thursday, September 1, 2016

As Different As Night and Day

As Different As Night and Day

People often compare one thing to another and want to say they’re different: but as different as they might be, they’re also similar. Maybe it would be better to just recognize them each for what they are.

I live in Las Vegas and spend summers in the Adirondack Mountains: these are as different as two places can be. I originally started spending time here in the mountains to get a break from the crowd and tumult of Las Vegas: the difference being one is busy and the other quiet.  And I leave Vegas in the summer to escape the heat, and return at summer’s end to avoid the cold: hot and cold are also as different as two things can be. But they’re not so different: it’s still me, there are things to do, friends to see and good times in each. Maybe they’re not so different.

We have two granddaughters and spend lots of time with them: they live near us in Las Vegas and recently visited us here in the mountains. One is 4, the other 2; one is blond, the other brunette; one looks like she might grow to be tall, the other seems like she’ll be more like me.  But they’re both wonderfully unique and full of being themselves: maybe they’re not so different.

We have a 20-year old Jeep here that endures because it’s only used 2 or three months a year: it’s a good old car (emphasis on old). But we’ve become nervous about taking it on longer trips here so we bought a gently used Toyota to allay those concerns: the new one as apparently different from the old. But they’re still good and reliable vehicles that can get us from one place to another: we may use them for different purposes, but they’re not really so different.

I could go on with many more comparisons between things that I have that are different any yet similar (sneakers and guitars quickly come to mind): but what’s the point.  We all have lots of things that are dear to us: we get much pleasure (and use) from each and so maybe there’s no reason to make comparisons.  And if we spend too much time on those comparisons we just might miss the moments we spend with each and that would be unfortunate.  Ram Dass taught us to “be here now”; Crosby Stills and Nash sang “love the one you’re with”: both offer sage advice.  Every night and day offers great opportunities: live each moment to the fullest to get the most out of life.

Here’s one of my messages about knowing and appreciating the value of the things we have:

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences.” Eleanor Roosevelt

Most people I meet think working in Las Vegas’ casinos had to have been very interesting and exciting: to me it was a great job. Working for Wynn was challenging, for sure, but it also provided lots of experiences in all of the places he sent me (Atlantic City, Las Vegas, the Gulf coast of Mississippi, Argentina, Monte Carlo and Macau): each had their own special challenges and opportunities.  I got to live life and experience all those different and rich experiences.  It was never dull and it always presented chances to get involved in a never-ending array of circumstances with a continually expanding group of great people.  Your work can be just as thrilling and rewarding: learn all you can, go wherever you can, volunteer for everything you can, and get engaged in all that you can.  Don’t be afraid to participate in things that are new: that’s how to make your job all it can be today.

Stay well.

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