If All Bets Are Off, Then All Bets Could Also Be . . . On?

I’ve been thinking for months now of this brilliant thing my friend Maris Kreizman said:

screen-shot-2017-02-05-at-10-36-43-am

 

I mean, seriously. All bets are off, right?

I keep waking up thinking, if whatever happened yesterday actually happened, then who’s to say wtf could happen today? Wtf has become the new normal, which is unsettling, but perhaps it’s not entirely a bad thing. (Yes, I’m trying as hard as I can to hang on to a shred of optimism.)

Because hey, if people can do all these shockingly wtf things, then couldn’t the rest of us do some formerly-known-as-unthinkable stuff, too, but in a positive way? Like Maris said, if that guy can be President, then you could be . . . president of a company! Or a famous painter. Or an inventor. Or a public speaker or an activist or a Congressperson. Or a giraffe. OK, maybe not that one — but the rest, why not? Clearly, a lot of the boundaries we thought existed don’t really exist at all, and if that’s true for the bad, it’s got to be true for the good as well. What the fuck? People doing amazing things, THAT the fuck.

Look: I’m no Pollyanna. I’m not saying, “I want everything to be fine, so I’m just going to sing la-la-la and hope it’ll be fine.” There’s a boulder of uncertainty and foreboding sitting on my chest every morning when I open my eyes. I’m just using stubborn force of will to push the boulder off, to climb up and stand upon it instead, shaky as the footing may be. It’s a mental exercise I have to repeat daily. Some days it works.

When it does, I can see that even among all the baaaaaaad things happening in the world, there are good things happening now that we would never have imagined before: cross-disciplinary action groups forming among people who never used to sit in the same room; all sorts of uncomfortable but necessary discussions in boardrooms and neighborhoods and schools; and a lot more healthy questioning of what’s true and what’s right. Also [non-sequitur alert], speaking of things we could not have dreamed of before, this is now a way to announce a pregnancy:

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I never thought to announce anything like that, but now I can’t fathom announcing anything any other way. There was before, when this wasn’t possible, and now, when it is. And you better believe I’ll be announcing everything in this fashion henceforth.

Screen Shot 2017-02-05 at 11.52.01 AM.png
I hereby announce that for lunch today I’m having TACOS.

 

Anyway: People keep asking, “When will things feel normal again? When will we bounce back?” I’m no physicist, but it seems to me that bouncing back relies on certain predictable laws of motion. But nothing is predictable anymore. That means we’re not going to bounce back. We’re going to bounce forward or sideways or all over the place, and we’re going to have to figure out how to do it as we go.

I could be nuts, but this is what I’m telling myself: If whatever happened yesterday and the day before and the day before could happen, then whatever you and I can dream up for tomorrow could happen, too. Because if anything is possible . . . then anything is possible.

45 comments

  1. Now I have this Shel Silverstein poem in my head!
    Listen to Mustn’ts, child, listen to the Don’ts.
    Listen to the Shouldn’ts, the Impossibles, the Won’ts.
    Listen to the Never Haves, then listen close to me.
    Anything can happen, child, Anything can be.

  2. to borrow a phrase of someone smarter than I, “just keep swimming, just keeping swimming, swimming, swimming” (please disregard that tears in my eyes as I sing this…it’s just allergies…I haven’t had them checked but I have my suspicion it’s to anger and stupidity)

  3. Yep – all you have to do is fake it, and then make it up as you go along. Love the lunch announcement. The height of good taste. Classy.

  4. What the Fuck? THAT the fuck…classic! I like your take on today’s events. I have to say that I find it like a breath of fresh air to hear people say among the chaos and confusion, we should strive to do good and take risks for a good cause. That’s a really enlightened point of view in my opinion and something that I hope more people will try to emulate. Cheers!

  5. I would totally agree witb you i mean we all talk about change right so why not start now and nothing is impossible i mean look who our president is i feel like you if we can dream than think big too i mean why the hell not people we need change it mind over mind at times and this is a time for change and im walking forward slowly but swiftly

  6. Maybe if we don’t bounce back we’ll stretch out! I read this thinking that djt became president in part because of his overdeveloped sense of entitlement. But why do the rest of us have to make ourselves small? Why can’t we exercise that entitlement muscle? I think that’s why we’re seeing unprecedented#s of women and people of color exploring the idea of running for a government position.
    And why it’s okay now to announce lunch with roses and a gauzy veil! Good on you!

  7. I also find it a bit strange that almost everything, including lunch plans, can now be posted as relevant information or “announcements” on social media. You’re certainly correct about the daily WTF moment, as I can vouch that they happen multiple times a day, every day. Yes, it can be a bit uncomfortable (since we can’t successfully predict what may happen next, as you pointed out), but I like the optimistic view from your friend that you’ve now adopted. I’ll have to remind myself of your point-of-view when I get to feeling down about the world! I also really enjoyed the humorous tone throughout – I giggled about the giraffe thing the entire time I was reading.

  8. I’ve had this same thought lately. I’ve been stressing about leaving school but then I think that I might not be qualified enough for a job. And one day I said, wtf! But Trump is the president. Now I want to apply to jobs I know I’m not qualified for and just reference Trump as my previous experience.

  9. I’m not a professional blogger but it’s not appealing to the readers when your blog has too much bad words. You might want to reconsider not using the f word. Happy blogging!

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