Yesterday I bumped into this wee film. It is 6 minutes long but it really caught my attention. Seriously have a watch, it’s worth it!
In today’s media driven society it’s easy to lose a grip on reality. To believe that people can be born with the perfect beach body and to then wonder why you weren’t? Of course the back story is that people with the perfect beach body spend hours and a fortune each week in the gym for month upon month. In this wee film we see Danny MacAskill on a wee day out perform some amazing stunts on his bike. The first 4 minutes are incredible but the last two reveal some deep truths.
As I watch my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts update themselves with the front story of people’s lives I can be tempted to start to wonder why my life doesn’t compare. One can risk feeling waves of discontent as the media continually bombards the reader with lives that are seamlessly lived at the top of the mountain. That youth worker photographed with 30 kids having the time of their lives is their norm. They have never experienced nights that went belly up and don’t know what it is to have numbers drop. That preacher who is enormously talented and incredibly popular and yet have never seemed to have had to polish or hone their skills. A sermon that stunk like last week’s milk is not within their experience. Of course this isn’t reality but after relentless waves of images presenting it as so one can fall into the trap of a false reality.
In this age of the instant you could be deceived into thinking that practicing something can seem a pointless and outdated concept. That you can either do something or you can’t. Failure is permanent. Life is not like that and I worry for the generation we are raising that is being fooled into thinking that success is as much a right as oxygen and that talent does not also require effort. Let’s all embrace failure as temporary and understand that it simply points to the need to try again. Let both young and old celebrate the journey of having to repeat and repeat something until it is achieved.
Reality needs to dawn that life, all life, has both a front story and a back one. We need to embrace the fact that with practice (and as in this case some smart editing) we too can appear to be able to do anything.
Ps I love Danny’s videos and this is not a critic of him or what he does but of our media obsessed culture.