I was in a high school play of Herb Gardner’s “A Thousand Clowns.” It is about a young boy who lives with his free-spirited uncle Murray Burns (a creative genius), who is forced to conform to society in order to keep custody of the boy. I played Arnold (Martin Balsam’s character in the movie), Murray’s brother. He was a sell-out to the business world. When Murray accused Arnold of selling out to the business world,Arnold responded, “There are people who spill things and people who get spilled on…I choose to ignore the stains.”
He got spilled on a lot.
Do you get spilled on alot? If you get spilled on frequently, What do you do about the stains? Do you ignore them or do you whine and moan? Chances are, if you get spilled on, you encourage it by both mentioning it to everyone you see, or ignoring it and not changing your habits. Life is full of people who get spilled on. We hear them all the time on television, in the office, at home and just driving around town.
I am not arguing that you should start spilling on other people, but the go-getters in this world shake things up. They look at life and say, “Does it always have to be this way?”
The people who get spilled on say things like:
“I wouldn’t if I were you (And aren’t we thankful they aren’t you!).”
“Let’s wait and think about it.”
“Maybe you should have something to fall back on when this doesn’t work.”
“Nothing good ever comes from change.”
Where are you today? Spilling, getting spilled on? What are you doing about the stains? Are you a victor, or a victim griping about the stains?
Funny. The guy who played Murray turned out to be a conformist. I turned out to be The Reinvention Strategist(TM).
I hope the stains make you uncomfortable so much that instead of talking about them, you do something about them.