Try happily ever afterDo you know what work is? Work is doing something that you don’t like to do.
By: Kevin Holten, The Dickinson Press
Do you know what work is? Work is doing something that you don’t like to do.
Mowing the lawn, raking leaves, washing dishes and lifting weights is work. Chasing cows all day long in the Badlands on horseback is not, at least not for me.
Writing, for some, is considered work. Writing, for me, is a lot of fun. It means getting to talk to you even though I can’t see you. That’s really nice. Especially since I don’t have to shower, shave, shine my shoes or put on a bowtie to do it. Not that I own a bowtie, but you know what I mean.
Now let’s say that everything in the world can only fit into one of two categories; either work or fun. Then where would you put everything?
If you’re a football player, would you put winning a championship under the category of work or fun? If you ride a bucking horse in a rodeo, is that work or fun? If you farm, is that work or fun?
I’ve farmed and ranched enough to know that both occupations are really nothing more than big boys playing with big toys. Sure, they get angry and frustrated when things break down but so do little boys with little toys and they never call that work.
Digging a sewer by hand is work. Digging a sewer with a backhoe might be fun, if you like running a backhoe. Therefore something that you consider work might be fun for your neighbor and something that he/she considers work might be the thing that you like to do most.
Of course, most people consider going to Las Vegas to be a lot of fun. I do too except for the part about sitting at a blackjack table for 72 hours wondering where your house payment went and where the next car payment is going to come from. Then there’s walking down the Las Vegas Strip in the middle of summer in hundred-degree heat. I forget, is that fun? Is going to a mall fun?
Of course, even the most fun thing can get old if you do it too long. Do you know why? Because of your mind.
You see boredom is man’s worst enemy. It got Eve to pick the apple, Dillinger to rob the bank, Columbus to cross the ocean, Custer to cross the plains, Hitler to hold the world hostage and Armstrong to step on moon rocks.
Which brings us to the main point of this column: Living happily ever after. Is it possible? Or is it too much work?
Well guess what? With the right person you might just love them enough not to care.
Screenwriter and director Nora Ephron said, “It struck me that the movies had spent more than a half century saying, “They lived happily ever after” and the following quarter-century warning that they’ll be lucky to make it through the weekend. Possibly we are now entering a third era in which the movies will be sounding a note of cautious optimism, saying: ‘You know, it just might work.’”
I think we’re mostly confused about what love is. For example, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, in “Wind, Sand and Stars,” written in 1939, said, “Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking outward together in the same direction.”
You see love is a symbol of eternity. It wipes out all sense of time, destroys all memory of a beginning and eliminates any fear of an end.
Actor Peter Ustinov said that, “Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.”
While Henry Van Dyke, the American author, educator, and clergyman said, “Time is too slow for those who wait too swift for those who fear too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.”
So, can you live happily ever after? Absolutely. It’s almost harder not to.
Holten is a freelance columnist and cartoonist from Dickinson.
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