in: Advice, Character, Sunday Firesides

Sunday Firesides: Nothing Good Comes

The mass of men exist in a state of waiting.

They have a vision, vague in contours but salient in feeling, about what their life should look like, what it will look like, eventually. This vision perhaps includes a loving spouse and happy children. Certainly a fulfilling, interesting career. A good group of friends. An exciting hobby. Maybe a name. Maybe some fame.

The average man has an unconscious certainty that he is destined to be somebody; that the things he hopes for and dreams of will show up; that as time passes, his ship will come in.

As a young man, he waits for this vessel with bright-eyed eagerness, sure that after college graduation, things will start happening for him.

In middle age, his waiting becomes a little more anxious, but he remains confident that, any day now, the right opportunities and circumstances will present themselves.

In his twilight years, he scans the empty horizon with the sinking realization that the life he dreamed of isn’t moving his way, and never was.

Bad things — illnesses, accidents, tragedies — will arrive at one’s doorstep unbidden and unasked for.

But nothing good comes.

It has to be gone after, fetched, swam out to and seized.

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