Sunday, July 2, 2023

The Bright Side of Life

Ryan finishes the
Lutsen 99er
In 1979, "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" written by Eric Idle, was performed in Monty Python's Life of Brian. The song was also included in the 2005 musical, "Monty Python's Spamalot." Is there something that makes the song so enduring? Here are some of the lyrics:                                                               

Some things in life are bad, they can really make you mad, other things just make you swear and curse.....If life seems jolly rotten, there's something you've forgotten, and that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing."  Chorus, "Always look on the bright side of life."

No matter when a picture is take, my friend Ryan always has a smile. Whether it be mud splatter, an ice beard, or  a bloodied leg or forearm he exhibits a genuine smile. Maybe it comes from the enjoyment of movement on two wheels? Yet, I have seen this smile many times when he is not on one of his bikes. Ryan has a full repertoire of emotions, but somehow he grounds himself with a smile. 

A hiking adventure in early May, close to Colombia's Caribbean coast tested my endurance. It was not so 
Saturated, but made it
through the first day
much the physicality of hiking, as it was the bodily adjustment to the tropical climate. The heat and humidity meant I was constantly wet. This was not just some unsightly perspiration, but soaked shirts, pants, socks, and hiking boots for five days. In the midst of my self-consciousness and some ribbing from fellow hikers and guides, I realized my bodily mechanisms were working to keep me moving forward. My sweating was beyond my control. Even though my limits were tested, I could easily flash a smile. I had a functioning body, the ability to interact in a less than ideal setting, plenty of food and water, and a covered place to sleep every night. Plenty of reasons to brighten my face!

With a steady diet of media, my emotional, spiritual, and relational functions plummet faster than a roller coaster cresting the initial climb. I believe there are individuals, businesses, and organizations who want nothing more than for me to view the world as frightening. These sources benefit both in power and prosperity from providing toxic materials which nourish an attitude of despair and dependency.  It is easy to get caught in the thick of thin things. Arguing over minutiae is a distraction from living life. The number of people, situations, and things to cherish far outnumber those I am encouraged to curse. I am tempted at times to succumb to the constant reminder that life is not fair and others are getting preferential treatment. ENOUGH ALREADY! 

We all have choices. We all have life. We all are terminal. The question is, "How do each of us choose to see life ?" I will choose the bright side.

"Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" This link takes you to a YouTube clip of the song from the "Life of Brian." You may find it off-color or offensive. However, that is part of the Monty Python genre of humor.

Shorts, snow, and a smile!

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