Thursday, August 25, 2011
Wait! Can I Try That Again?
Through all of Bill Murray's lovable outrageousness, there can be found at the heart of Groundhog Day a remarkable idea. What if we could try and try again until we get the day right? What if we could fine tune our actions and our words and our reactions? What if we could tweak the little things we say, the nuances with which we say them, and the level of service we offer to our neighbors?
Unlike Murray's character in the movie, Phil Connors, who deals with no consequences from the previous day's mistakes or triumphs, we must live with the fallout from our yesterdays. Are we learning from them? Are we taking the time to review what is working and what isn't? A little self-analysis is invaluable if we allow ourselves to correct our course and try to improve.
My daughter, Miranda, finds herself in a unique situation of getting do-overs, again and again and again. As a College Program Cast Member at Walt Disney World, her assignment for the next five months is to be a Skipper on the Jungle Cruise in the Magic Kingdom. This is a unique opportunity to perform the same script, over and over, to new captive audiences every ten minutes. She also has the freedom to make it her own by inserting her unique personality and her astute observations.
Imagine being able to gauge your performance by the audience's laughter. Imagine being able to throw in new material to the tried and true jokes, to change it up a little, to banter with the hecklers. I cannot imagine what I would do in such a situation, nor can I comprehend the courage it would take, nor the grace, nor the poise, nor the mental agility.
And yet. It does come with the chance to have do-overs, always perfecting, always improvising, always experimenting. Just like Groundhog Day.
And I suppose, as in the movie when Phil Connors finally gets it right, when Miranda does have the perfect day with the perfect audience, doing and saying everything just how she would like, perhaps then it will be time to move forward, to come home, and to try something new.
Good luck, Sweetheart! We think you're amazing!!