Fairfield Ledger
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Neighbors Growing Together | Apr 24, 2014

Better off without well-meant advice

By Carson Tigges, Ledger sports editor | Jun 09, 2011

I recently heard some guidance from a much wiser man than I.

I do what I can to put these things to good use, but when I thought about it, it seemed like terrible advice.

I was told to “live every day like your last.”

We’ve all heard it before, but no one has ever taken it to heart because it would make for a terrible world to live in. The general public running amok with nothing to lose does not seem like a good thing.

I imagine the posted speed limits would be laughed at. Guys would be pinching girls’ butts on a whim, and maybe even vice versa. I highly doubt my week’s worth of garbage would be promptly taken away from the curb every Tuesday morning.

The obnoxiously loud motorcycles tearing down Burlington Avenue in front of my open windows? Well, that would probably stay the same.

Maybe worst of all, I don’t see myself sitting at this desk writing another rambling column for the opinion page if it’s my last day on Earth.

The point is, nothing would ever get done.

If we’re all living “like there’s no tomorrow,” I would feel obligated to go skydiving. Or something.

Problem is, the people who make that possible, such as a pilot, would all be out bungee jumping. Or something.

Meanwhile, my usually punctual garbage man is seeking his own thrill and wrestling a crocodile in the Congo.

It makes me thankful for the system we have in place. Everyone has something he or she can and should be working toward, and the sun rising tomorrow is one of the surest bets you can make.

I’m also thankful I don’t follow every piece of (rotten) advice I’m given, and it had me thinking about other clichés that have come up in the past.

On separate occasions I’ve been told to follow my heart, use my head and trust my gut. My legs feel kind of left out, especially considering they are the only things that ever take me anywhere.

The early bird gets the worm, but, also, good things come to those who wait. I suppose which method you choose depends on whether you consider worms “good.”

Life is short. That makes sense if by “short” you mean the single longest thing every human being ever does.

Give 110 percent. Don’t even get me started on the mathematic impossibility of that task.

We could go on and on all day — we hear these phrases all the time, but sometimes they just don’t make any sense.

A friend will tell you to follow your dreams because he just heard about the billionaire computer whiz who started a business in his neighbor’s garden shed. Chances are, your friend didn’t hear about the millions of failures.

In my case, I see JJ Barea scurrying around the court in the NBA finals, so I should still be out on my driveway preparing for the upcoming draft. It’s too bad being a 6-foot white guy doesn’t work out like that for everyone.

It’s important to work hard, it’s important to aspire to something, but let’s just be smart about it. Because if dumb were dirt, he would be about an acre. Or something like that.

Carson Tigges is Ledger sports editor.

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