Remember the lovely Naomi Shihab Nye poem I posted last Monday, about missing an opportunity because you’re blind and deaf to it?
Well, here’s another test. You get another chance. Wink, wink.
Please stop reading by the end of this paragraph if you truly want to challenge yourself. If you read any further, it’ll spoil the video above. Last winter, Dan and I attended one of the Walker Art Center’s “2009 British Television Advertising Awards” screenings. The above commercial is a take-off on one of the ones we saw that evening. Watch it and see if you can count the number of ball passes correctly.
Now, stop reading and watch the video. I know, it’s Monday–why am I making you work?–but it’s only a minute and a half out of your life, and hopefully, you’ll come away, invigorated and purposeful about your day. Trust me.
Have you finished the video? Did you see anything other than you were supposed to see?
I don’t know about you, but when I saw it, I saw the immediate implications for my own life. The video (and the fact that I failed miserably when it came to noticing anything other than what I was supposed to notice) highlighted the fact that we can miss things. We can live through an event and get it all wrong. If we’re dead to everything around us, except that which we’re interested in, we might miss the small serendipitous moments of the day, like a child asking for a cuddle or a friend calling and needing to talk or a bright blue butterfly crossing our path or someone needing a smile or even worse–a complete change of plans! Heaven forbid.
One thing I love about our three-year-old daughter is her astonished delight at anything new–her gasps of wonder, her yelps of joy. Many children are this way. Dan and I were wondering the other night why such a trait disappears over time. Is it because life–as hard as it is–edges in, or is it that our brains start to decipher what’s really important and sift out all the rest? Heaven forbid.
You could argue that you wouldn’t be a very good employee if you saw (and tried to manipulate) every jot and tittle, and you’d be right. But in this wondrous life we’ve been given, in our every day interactions, do you think it might help to be a little loosey-goosey with what we notice and pay attention to?
I think so.
So, here’s to being loosey-goosey today. What “unimportant things”–in the midst of your personal busy chaos–will you notice today?