Life is all about second chances. If it weren’t we wouldn’t be here. We wouldn’t be here to talk about it, boast even. Show off; on bumper stickers, fridge magnets and wallpapers.
Learnt, borrowed or forwarded, wisdom is everywhere these days. From a blonde girl’s t-shirt to your boss’s e-mail sign-off, from a coffee mug to a random tweet. Even fellow slaves have caught the message bug, their mundane cubicles proclaiming life’s profound truths. ‘Success always hugs you in private but failure always slaps you in public’ says one. ‘To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people merely exist,’ says another. Then there are the outright rebellious kinds: ‘Silence does not always mean yes. It means…
You have always been suspicious of anything that is in abundance from credit cards to carbohydrates. So you have kept your rowing station practical and without frills. But some wisdom would have helped today, even a tit-bit. For you sure feel stupid today.
You ought not to. Today was a day you got more work than on most days. Concurrently, today also turned out to be a day you questioned your existence the least. It sure took a lot of tunnel vision to finally finish that confidentiality agreement that looked like it would never end. It took that and a lot of saying no. No to taking coffee breaks, no to seeing that funny video everybody has been forwarding and no to answering the perpetually blinking phone. And it would have all been worth it too. All the big effort would have been worth it if you had only pressed one small button. But you didn’t. And now it’s all gone. Into a black hole of disappointments never to return.
Relieved that you had finally wrestled the document to the ground and annoyed at the number of different versions you had created in the process, you go on a deleting spree, saying ‘Do not save’ to anything that pops up, including your day’s work. It takes some time for the stupidity of it all to sink in. When it does, you are so cross you kick everything in sight. You come to close to smashing the computer too. But if you were that impulsive, you wouldn’t have lasted this long in this job.
So you sit back, take deep breaths and try to figure out why you were born. Colleagues drop by, some sympathize with your sob story; others can’t stop laughing, especially after looking at the harrowed look on your face. You know you should sleep over it to keep yourself from killing someone. And if you can’t laugh at yourself, you should at least take some positive out of this guffaw. So you take a size-40 font print-out to finally join the message band-wagon. It says:
To err is human, to save is divine