Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Maybe my life isn't so bad after all...

I thought I had a bad day at work. I made an error in the computer system. It wasn't life threatening. No one will die/get hurt/be misdiagnosed. It was entirely fixable, caught quickly and in the grand scheme of things not a big deal. But it hit me hard...I'm human. I make mistakes and I HATE mistakes. There are a million bazillion proverbs and platitudes about mistakes being learning experiences, etc...but that doesn't change the fact that my subconcious goal is to be just like Mary Poppins--practically perfect in every way. I fixed my error, took responsibility and apologized for it because that is what adults do (even though none of these things was asked for/required). I was depressed about my mistake. I pouted and sulked once I got home. So what happened to change my bad day into "I thought I had a bad day"? I read this:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080130/ap_on_re_la_am_ca/haiti_eating_dirt&printer=1;_ylt=Ailot6yH89g_34WbBqhIkp69IxIF

Some people are so poor that they have to eat dirt cakes. I am not one of those people. Did I really have a bad day?...No. The person eating dirt cakes for the third day in a row is the one having a hard time--not me. My life might be far better than I thought...and my heart hurts that anyone has to eat dirt...

This post is also a very good time to mention a book I am currently reading called Hungry Planet: What the World Eats by Peter Menzel. It is life altering. I first read about the book in a tiny mention on Causabon's Book blog. The author of the blog, Sharon recommended it. It immediately sounded intriguing to me. The book contains true stories/pictures of 30 families from 24 countries around the world. Each family had their picture taken in a room of their home surrounded by all the food they ate for an entire week. Stop and think about that for a moment. To me, it is mindblowing. All the soda consumed...all the burgers...all the cigarettes smoked...all of the food NOT eaten because they didn't have any more...all of the good, bad, and ugly on display for the world to read. The total amount of money each family spent on food for one week (in both the local currency and American dollars) is listed for each family. There are stories about each family. You don't just see a snippet of their lives you get to hear their words as well. The book does not pass judgment. The book does not lead you down any pathway of thinking. It merely lays out the information in front of you for you to explore the cultural differences on your own. My words cannot do it justice. You simply need to page through it yourself to comprehend the depth of it all...This book is absolutely, unquestionably just ducky.

23 comments:

Green Bean said...

Wow. The book sounds great. I'll have to add it to my list - my very long list. ;-) It really makes you stop and think about how lucky, really really lucky we are.

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