From our position atop the rock that the Acropolis sits on, we could see an excavation of some sort, lying below us. - May 2016.

Des Informations, des Idées, et des Opinions Suspectes - rarement mises à jour et de qualité douteuse.

Don't compare your life to others'

You have no idea what their journey is all about.

Try to make at least three people smile each day.

Not too long ago, my friend Chris sent me a 38-slide powerpoint presentation with each image containing a picture of a flower along with some platitude, like: Forgive everyone for everything and What other people think of you is none of your business.

Now, for me normally this would be something headed straight for the recycle bin, but I actually found some of the statements provocative - especially the eponymous, titular one because man, I do that ALL THE TIME. I envy other people success. And by that I mean biblical envy, when I don't just want success like theirs, instead I want the success of others at their expense. I want their actual success and then I want to see them lying in the ditch somewhere, dressed in tatters and clutching an empty liquor bottle in a plastic bag and I pull up in my Porsche and flick them a quarter along with some pithy, biting comment and then jump back in my car laughing and peel away at high speed with the gravel from my tires flying stingingly in their disappointed faces - you know, normal feelings like that.

So lately, I've been trying to live my life where I actually try to be happy for others' successes. I try to understand that they probably worked super-hard to get where they are and who knows? - if given the choice they may not actually choose to have when they have...maybe there is something in their life that they know about and I don't that they would gladly trade for whatever visible success they have. Like trading their monetary wealth for remission on their cancer?

But PRIOR to this realization, one person I totally envied was Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird which is quite possibly the very best novel I have ever read. As someone who has deluded myself into thinking that there is a novel in me, I totally envy Harper's Lee and her apparent ability to, without any effort at all, create a novel that not only won her the Pulitzer and garnered her accolades the world over, but has also made her a multi-millionaire - what a lucky devil! I'm totally jealous!

Or rather, I was jealous until I read this, an article about Harper Lee describing her as an unhappy, ostracized, and possibly mentally-disturbed recluse and one-hit-wonder...would I want that kind of life just for a few million dollars?

The reclusive Harper Lee with child actress Mary Badham, who played Scout in the film of Mockingbird

Well, maybe that's a bad example. OF COURSE I would, but if I ever find a better example, I'll insert it here...

Read more:
Don't mention the mockingbird! The reclusive novelist who wrote the classic novel that mesmerised 40 million readers
Buy To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Perennial Modern Classics)

Don't compare your life to others'

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Maybe read No Big Deal, a story I consider to be the very best thing I ever wrote.