Who Am I?

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A nobody; a nitwit; a pilot; a motorcyclist; a raconteur; a lover...of life - who loves to laugh, who tries to not take myself (or anything) too seriously...just a normal guy who knows his place in the universe by being in touch with my spiritual side. What more is there?

12 November 2011

Emotional Inertia

We muddle along, day in and day out, under some sort of strange assumption or perhaps expectation that nothing will really change in our lives. And then we get gob-smacked when something major happens: An accident or serious illness; the death of somebody close; the loss of a job…the list goes on. These things do happen. Sometimes you get fired. Eventually our parents are going to die. Accidents don’t always happen to the other guy.

I’ve seen plenty of examples of this. There is a certain psychological or emotional inertia at work that leaves some people unprepared for the little “surprises” that life can throw your way. And when it happens their whole world gets turned upside down.

This past summer that point was brought home most profoundly. We were all cruising along, flying our helicopters, drying our little cherry orchards and having a lot of fun. Monday, July 25th started out like every other day. Halfway through we learned that young Stephen had crashed and was killed. Nothing was the same for any of us after that. I won’t say that Stephen’s death did not affect me, because it did. But maybe not in the same way as the others. I’m sure some of them thought I was a cold-hearted, unfeeling sonovabitch.

For some time now, my philosophy has been that there is absolutely no guarantee that today is going to be anything like yesterday. It is foolish to expect it to be otherwise.

I’m not saying that we should walk around in a constant state of paranoia and fear, but we do need to understand and be emotionally prepared for the fact that as nice as yesterday was, today could be very, very different. And not necessarily in a bad way. Good things do happen too!


Anonymous said...

Must have taken some heat, huh Bob?

Bob said...

Great words, Bob. I love the way you say things.

Bob Barbanes: said...

No, "Anonymous," I actually haven't taken any heat...and in any case I'm not sure what you mean.

It's just that I've seen people who've recently gone through some extremely stressful situations that they did not foresee. We try to prepare, but how? The trouble is that we never know what's around the next corner. Even for me it's tough, I'll admit.

And "other" Bob? As always, thank you.

Anonymous said...

It seems that as Holiday times approach I always tend to get a bit reflective on things that have happened in the past, especially ones as you describe that are unexpected and sometimes tragic. The loss of my 28 yr. old sister in a helo crash on Christmas day comes to mind for sure, and others as well. Moms aren't supposed to die from cancer at the ripe old age of 52. It also seems the older I get, the more things I ponder and reflect on, and while not being "paranoid" I certainly can say that I tend to be a little more cautious/aware of surroundings in general. That given, you are 100% correct.... there are certainly no guarantees in life, not even from day to day.
As always, well put thoughts.
Take care my friend,

JetRanger3 said...

I lost my best friend in the whole world in Feb 09 to a Helicopter Crash at Blackwater. He taught me how to fly a Helicopter. It's been real tough. We used to fly every week. At least it was Quick, and he died doing what he loved to do. Don't make it any easier for us left behind.
Ron in New Bern

Anonymous said...

Post was the usual bob b.s. So if you're anticipating bad things, they don't affect you the same way? I would say that's a pretty arrogant and stupid statement. In other words, a typical bb post.

Bob Barbanes: said...

Anonymous says, "In other words, a typical bb post."


Well you read it, didn't you? Here's a piece of advice for future blog-reading: Skip this one. Then you won't have to waste your time commenting on it and I won't have to waste my time reading them.

Yeah, I anticipate bad things. No, they don't affect me the same way as some people. I see the bigger picture.

Arrogant? Stupid? Meh. Do the letters "GFY" mean anything to you?