I came across the following clip one morning quite randomly. It is a scene from the 1983 movie, The Right Stuff, and believe it or not, I remember watching it twenty (maybe thirty) plus years ago. But what pulled at me, and made me hang on to the clip for future reference, was the dichotomy between the late Sam Shepard’s character, Chuck Yeager, and the conspiring group of men wanting something from him - to break the sound barrier.
I pulled this clip up again today, and then realized, upon further research, that Sam crossed over a year ago yesterday. And as I believe in galactic synchronicity, I couldn’t let it go. Because watching the scene demonstrated something lost, but not out of reach. And that’s to do something because you really want to - intrinsically - for the hell of it. Not for money. Not for fame. But for the love.
In the clip, it’s obvious the man in the suit thought he got a great deal as he snickers among his cronies. Yeager agreed to go on a suicide mission and they didn’t have to pay him a dime. Insidious greed. But also ignorance. Perhaps the suited man has never done anything without strings attached. Oh the freedom he’s missing…
We’ve become accustomed to listening to the loudest person in the room, or on television, or on the internet, because bragging and boasting gets attention, albeit in an artificial sort of way. Motivation is often directly linked to social media and money. Doing something, anything, without the whole world knowing, has gone to the wayside.
And perhaps this is where we become lost, because that hobby, gourmet meal, or vacation, becomes more about other people, than one’s own needs and desires. Taking a quieter approach, seeking the love within and sharing our lives in meaningful, less superficial ways, doesn’t have to be a lost art.
Living authentically, finding what challenges us and doing it, regardless of the outcome – and that includes failure, is within us all. Paint, write, skateboard, learn an instrument, garden, build, go fishing, run, dance…these are the spices of life that make things interesting and connect us to one another. These are the things that last. And when we share these genuine expressions of ourselves, including our triumphs and defeats, we become relevant without even having to try.