Friday, 11 September 2009

Thought for the Day - BBC Radio Bristol

Here's the text of yesterday morning's thought, which you can listen to by clicking here and forwarding to 1:42:00

“That’s it! It’s ruined!”
Many of us have said this, and surely almost all of us heard it, as an over-reaction when something goes wrong. You hear it most at weddings, and on holidays and birthdays, when people are so keen that everything runs perfectly that any little set-back can seem like a disaster.
One man who I suspect doesn’t go in for this kind of catastrophising is Luke Jerram, the artist who has planted pianos in various corners of Bristol. Yet he could so easily have succumbed to despair after seeing for himself how one of his upright Joannas in Bedminster’s Dame Emily Park was smashed up by vandals.
In fact, Jerram was pretty philosophical. "The aim of the project is to reach a broad and diverse audience,” he told Radio Bristol, “and that involves taking some risks." Lots of people play the pianos, he added, and there are bound to be a few bad apples among them.
He even met the kids who did it, reporting that they looked bored and that "kids just go through a stage in their lives when they don't know how to entertain themselves."
I take my hat off to Luke Jerram. Big hopes and big ideas often come with big fears and huge disappointments. So often we let the fear paralyse us, or refuse to face it and then get crushed when some of that fear is realised.
Jerram shows us that the right attitude is to go into things accepting that not everything will go to plan and being content with whatever does work out. Perfection is not a requirement: we should strive for the best, but be content when what we do is merely good enough.