I can't swim. I can't drive, either. I was going to learn to drive but then I thought, well, I crash into a lake?~~ Dylan Moran
Have you ever played the 'What If Game' with yourself? It is sort of like 'Second Guessing Yourself'. You can apply it to any decision you have ever made. Actually it is a fun exercise to do. A study in alternative paths for your life. As a writer I use the 'What If Exercise' to study different scenarios for my characters but when I apply it to your real life it, for me any way, clears up my train of thought for some of my decisions.
When I make a decision I usually stay the course until I see myself getting into trouble. Then while making a course change; I apply the 'What If Exercise' to that change to help me find a better path. I actually learned to do this in a Creative Writing class at school.
The drawback to thinking about your 'What If's' is that 'What If's' tend to produce more 'What If's'. Look at this quote from Jack Handey; "It's probably not a good idea to be chewing on a toothpick if you're talking to the president, because he tells a funny joke and you laugh so hard you spit the toothpick out and it hits him in the face or something."
Absurd yes but lets apply the 'What If Exercise' to the quote. So your chatting with the President Clinton and he says "Why did the president cross the road?' Punch line; "To get to Burger King!" You start laughing and spit out the toothpick hitting Bill in the nose.
So here we go:
~What if I never got that toothpick?
~What if the president yells at me?
~What if this is considered an act of terrorism against the president?
~What if he gets a splinter in hos nose?
~What if the Secret Service arrests me?
~What if I have to spend the night in prison?
~What if there is a big guy who likes the way my mouth looks?
~What if I drop the soap?
And on and on and on it goes. It could get exhausting. Sure this is the absurd taken to a higher level of absurd so try it with an actual situation in your life. It could be fun and educational.
It seems that fears are all based on these things: illusion and future thinking, with a side order of 'What if.' 'What if that truck turns suddenly into our lane' 'What if I'm all alone at age 80?' What if? What if? What if? Yes, fears must be respected.
For me I think that would be a very good day. It should be for all of us.
The most important 'What If' of all, in my opinion:
What if the hokey-pokey isn't what it's all about?