Perception is an incredibly difficult thing because it is, by definition, an individual's concept of any given situation? "You only ever get one chance at a first impression" is something which Fujifilm SIS has been keen to flag up in order to ensure the company presents itself, in the best possible light, to any prospective customers. I am, however, a very firm believer in "Don't judge a book by the cover!" Possibly not in the same context as my employer's stance, but very important to my way of thinking - looking beyond the facade?
Work is something I do which allows me to chase my dreams. I don't mean a career ladder, it's all about pound notes in the bank. I go to work in order to enjoy my time when I'm not there - a very simple equation; earn enough to live, as opposed to survive! If the desire is to accrue more than enough then, in my opinion, it means you've lost the plot - money has become your master; a God, no longer a tool? The greed culture has drawn you in and now you're a slave to the mighty dollar? This is just an observation from a personal stand point; my perception. I have a many friends who are incredibly wealthy (as is one of my brothers - the one that doesn't go fishing!). I feel no jealousy about the situation - they've never caught a twenty pound pike, or watched their son do the same, seen a Golden Oriole, heard the dawn chorus in an East Kent woodland or spent time sitting quietly watching badgers emerging from their sett at dusk - probably never wanted to? Each to their own! Yet it is my ability to derive pleasure from the very things I see and experience which combine to make my life rich in these other aspects that no amount of money could ever replace, or purchase!
One of my most precious memories, besides the birth of my children and grand-children, and possibly best achievement, has to be finishing my first London Marathon in April 2000 (I've completed three). The feeling of elation, as I crossed the finishing line is unlike anything else I've ever experienced. Of course I didn't win it, that lap of honour would have killed me! No, four hours - thirty two minutes it took me, and I loved every second. The crowds were amazing, the vibe surreal and camaraderie unlike anything I have ever known. I have no idea what it feels like to win the lottery, but I do know that it won't be better than finishing your first marathon. I didn't win it, yet I felt like I had, such was the sense of achievement at crossing that line - I wasn't racing, I could hardly be described as a "runner" yet my self set goal had been accomplished and, as such, my perception was one of glorious success - I hadn't failed to complete my task, I hadn't let down the charities which I had been representing - man that felt good.
Once again, the spark for this post came via Steve Gale's blog. However it was not the post, but a comment, which drew my attention. A guy (?) using the pseudonym Birdvillan had offered an observation about the futility of "twitching" before going on to suggest time would be better spent getting involved in conservation based activities. The use of the word "worthy" is really what grabbed my attention. What gives any individual the right to decree what is worthy, thus imply that something else is not? Think about it for a moment; because we are all, each and everyone of us who are capable of thought, guilty of this! We use our own, self serving, values to pass judgement upon the ways others choose to find their own version of happiness/enjoyment. We can't help it, this whole perception thing is a basic design fault that comes with being human. I delight in this facet of humanity - it is the very basis of being an individual and, without it, the world would be a much less interesting place. Sermon over - work tomorrow; I need the money!