Sunday, March 8, 2015
March 8, 2015: Optimism or Insanity?
I have often heard it said that doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is a form of insanity. When I think about that, particularly if taken at face value, it's pretty hard to argue to the contrary. But then again, that old adage doesn't take into account that wonderfully illogical human trait, optimism.
Every spring we take to the fields. Every spring we do the same thing over and over, work the ground and get the fields ready for another season. No matter how disastrous the previous year was, each spring we're right back at it.
Such behavior would indeed fit the definition of insanity.
Enter in optimism. If insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, certainly optimism is doing the same thing over and over believing this is going to be the year. Optimism grows with the crop. It starts about this time of year when I breathe in those first whiffs of wet dirt getting opened up to dry. It really takes root when I drop the plow into the ground and start turning the good earth over. It reaches full bloom when the rows of strawberries are a deep green heavy with ripe fruit.
Then comes the reality of harvest. That's when optimism ebbs and the thoughts of insanity begin to creep into my mind. Harvest is when the harsh realities of endless red tape and rules, lack of help to pick, foreign competition keeping domestic prices below the break even point, all those things that rip optimism from me hit home all at once. Harvest is when I realize insanity is real, optimism is just something I have to try and conjure up to keep going.
And yet, I do keep going. Insanity can take the forefront at times, but it never totally eliminates optimism. It seems each year I can come up with another reason for hope. This year is no different. There is hope. There is opportunity out there.
There is a reason to once again push insanity aside and make room for optimism.