Try turning your head to the side. Say you’re looking left, across the street, over your shoulder. Maybe there’s a cute little girl in pigtails licking a lollipop, or a small dog, or, here in Clear Water Bay, a bronzed old man with gap-toothed grin harvesting his garden.
Now walk full speed ahead. Into a 35-foot cement telephone pole.
Now tell me how you feel.
I’ll tell you how I felt: pretty dumb. And a little embarrassed. (Thankfully, Mr. Gap-tooth was the only one around.)
Truth be told, I’m a klutz. I have been all my life. In high school sports, I was known for dropping the ball, missing the pass, and losing the goal. (One of the many reasons I now prefer individual sports.) I was also quite likely to trip over nothing, drop things, and knock over my water bottle. My longtime girl friends have never let me forget the time when, in about the fourth grade, I spilled chocolate milk all over my pink sweatshirt and white pants. I was mortified.
It’s a reputation I had hoped to outlive, but one which seems likely to follow me all of my days. Despite my best attempts, my mind seems to wander far from my body while doing almost everything. (Even now, as I type, and as I want desperately to focus so I can get something written, all I can think about is everything else I should be doing.)
The good thing, though, is that—somehow—I am coming to accept this flaw. So I drop things. So I’m not the most observant of people. So what? What’s your point?
We all have strengths and weaknesses. The key to success (and sanity) is to hone in on what you’re good at, and be able to laugh at yourself for what you’re not.
At least that’s what I keep telling myself. (And you, Mr. Gap-tooth. I see you laughing at me!)