How different would you life be if you didn’t know how old you were?

It was my birthday on Tuesday –  some of you didn’t wish me happy birthday, but that’s okay I’m over it now! 🎈

Getting older is funny isn’t it? I remember being 16 and meeting someone who was 28 and thinking, wow you must be so mature and together.

Now I’m that age. I assumed there’d be some kind of change, some kind of process where you just morph into a mature adult – like in ‘The Sims.’

But that doesn’t happen. You just have to adapt and make out like you’re all there.

The question I’ll leave you with is this… how different would your life be if you didn’t know how old you were?

One of those quotes…

Can you remember the last time you heard or read a really good quote?

One that left you thinking about it for hours, or even days afterwards?

For me that happened on Friday, and it was from a family friend:

“Times elastic.

It’s a fixed thing.

I’m convinced of it.”

It was context as to just how quickly time it seemed that time had passed.

And for some reason it just really hit me.

It still does now.

That’s it. To add anymore would detract from its impact.

The radio always plays the same songs

If you’ve ever listened to a popular radio station for an extended period of time you’ll know that the same songs are played over and over again.

A lot of people don’t like that.

So that’s why streaming sites such as Spotify have become some popular. Because people want to be able to choose what they listen to, and find an easier way to discover new songs that they’ll like.

It’s the same with TV and Netflix.

We want choice, choice, choice and more choice.

Long gone are the days when the TV listings would decide your night’s entertainment.

But, with choice comes indecision.

It’s the same with dating apps.

A huge chunk of the population swipe through face after face, almost desensitising themselves to the actual people that lie beyond the profile photo and blurb.

When it comes to our lives as a whole now – how is having so much choice affecting our way of thinking?

Relationships, jobs, studies – are we as determined to fight for them when they aren’t going right?

Or, does such a world of opportunities make us not want to try as hard because we live safe in the knowledge that ‘there’s always something else out there’?

Do faraway Instagram images steal us away from anything remotely challenging by convincing us to try and find another version of paradise?

It’s definitely not all bad, of course, but I don’t think it’s all good either.

 

The coffee cup that stopped everyone

I was on the bus travelling home this afternoon.

I climbed to the top deck and chose an empty seat.

I found one that I thought looked good, but as I got closer I noticed that there was a discarded coffee cup on the seat.

So, I did the easy thing – walked past it and chose another seat.

I began to notice that everyone else did the same as me.

That one empty coffee cup stood in everyone’s way and everyone walked past it.

Eventually the top deck of the bus filled up.

Then more people got on.

But instead of moving the cup they either went back downstairs or stood.

Finally, a tall man in a long grey jacket got on the bus.

He walked through the aisle, saw the seat and, with a deft flick of his right hand, moved the coffee cup away.

He sat down and enjoyed the rest of his journey in comfort.

How often in life do we take the easiest way possible?

Are the obstacles that stop our progress as bad as we think they are?

‘The Way’

On my lunch break today I wandered over to a nearby market for some street grub.

Predictably enough, as it was a Friday lunchtime, it was packed.

Just as I was working out which stall to go to, I saw a whirl of motion somewhere in the crowd and watched as a guy drove his way through, burrito clasped firmly in his hand.

“Get out of the way, out of the way, out of the way” was all he kept saying to himself.

He annoyed everyone.

As he eventually disappeared I thought about that term. ‘The way’.

How often do we say it? That person got in the way, there was a car in the way, etc.

But, what we never think is that, quite often, our way isn’t the same as everyone else’s.

When writing to selling a product, for example, there’s a certain way we want the customer to go…a way that benefits us eventually.

But, to be successful, we need to make it the right way for the customer.

And, to do that, we need to keep in mind that ‘the way’ for us isn’t always ‘the way’ for everyone else.

Ashley Brown 2017

The coffee cup that reminded me I was human

So, there I am. It’s a little after 9am and I’m on an aeroplane.

I’ve been up since 4am and my brain has become a bubbling hybrid of two extremes. Sleepiness and pre-holiday excitement.

When it comes to travel I’m a reader. I love to read when I’m on a flight or a long drive. It’s guilt-free reading time when you have nothing else to do but lose yourself in words that inspire and interest you.

So, to keep myself sharp, I order a coffee. This turns up:

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I assumed that the bit on the top was to allow the coffee to cool down. I left it for a while and came back to it…only to find out that it was too hot.

So I pull the lid off, let it cool down, and then take a sip. Damned if I don’t get a mouthful of coffee suds.

Instantly my stunned mind went to blame the airline. Why on earth would they serve coffee with such sediment?

The flight attendant walks past, smiles at me, notices that I put my lid on the floor and asks me if I want another one.

Why? Why would I? I just took the lid off…


And then it hits me. The ‘cooling off bit on the top’ (great phrasing) is actually a filter…to stop idiots like me getting a mouthful of coffee suds.

And so I gratefully accepted the new lid and enjoyed my coffee through the filter.

For a moment or two I felt the thing that we all fear most…idiocy.

It was so obvious…how did I not realise?

Hindsight has a way of making you feel ridiculous, doesn’t it?

But that feeling didn’t last long. Pretty soon it disappeared into the clouds around me and slipped away from everyone else’s memory.

I mean, after all, in a world where we try our hardest to know everything and to uncover every secret…it’s nice to sometimes realise just how stupid you are.