Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Michael J. Fox: Man of Opportunity

"Michael J. Fox. Now there's a guy whose life is so much more than yours or mine."

I heard that exact quote at work today. I don't talk about work much on here. That is on purpose. I don't want to be like one of those bloggers out there who constantly talks about their job, for one reason. The other reason, and more importantly, I really don't want to end up saying something that could get me fired from my job. So I steer clear of work talk if at all possible.

Now that I have qualified this entry, I was sitting at work today and overheard a conversation going on behind me. It intrigued me. Much of it was about opportunity, and the opportunities (or lack thereof) we have in this world. They were discussing the lack of opportunities in this particular area (Joplin, MO). They pointed to California as a land overflowing with opportunity. They wondered what their lives would be like had they lived in California. What they would be (rock star, etc.), the money they would make, the lives they would lead. This got me to thinking about opportunity and what location has to do with our opportunities.

To me, opportunity can have very little to do with location. Especially in today's world. The Internet, easy travel, and other technologies have in essence brought the world and those opportunities to us. It is then up to us to seek out these opportunities and take advantage of them. Sure there are certain universities, colleges, or locations where we may have to go in order to obtain some goals. However, I see no reason why any of us, if we are determined enough should believe we just don't have any opportunity. Even in a little Missouri town. Call me an optimist or even crazy, but I truly believe opportunity is created by our ambition in what it is we truly desire. Opportunity comes our way because of our ability and hard work hard at what it is we do. Determination to get our job done, or obtain the goals we set are what create for us more opportunities. I truly believe you should always do a good job in everything that you do, and if you do you will be rewarded somewhere down the line.

Obviously, all of this is assuming we actually have some accomplishments along the way. So what does all of this have to do with Michael J. Fox? Well, that was just where their conversation veered. Toward his biography, his life, and what was perceived as his life being so much better than yours or mine. In Back To The Future, Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) repeats numerous times, "If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything." Maybe we could all learn a lesson from McFly.

If you get anything valuable out of this, remember this: Opportunity is worthless to us if we are never willing to go out there and obtain it through a little hard work and determination.

Since I'm apparently feeling motivational I'll leave you with some quotes and interesting little known history along these same lines.

  • "It's kind of fun to do the impossible." Walt Disney
  • "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." Thomas Edison
  • "There is no security on this earth, there is only opportunity." Gen. Douglas MacArthur
Bringing the Guitar


Grandma Meents said...

As a Californian, I'm tickled that people think California is full of opportunity. There was an old Gatlin Brothers song that said, "All the gold in California is in a bank in the middle of Beverly Hills in somebody else's name." That is the truth. Take the young man with the guitar, walking along the beach in California (amazing how I figured that out, isn't it?) I'll bet he's 23 years old and still living with his mother and stepfather because real estate is sky high in California and young people can't afford an apartment, let alone a house on a little postage stamp sized piece of land. But of course his mother loves him, and he gets along great with his stepdad, so no one's in a hurry for him to move out, but still. Should he go looking for opportunity, it would be in someplace, like for instance, Texas. I'd imagine.

Andrew Weaver said...

I agree. One thing I didn't mention was the perception of opportunity. Sometimes all people see is more money, or the chance of more money. They don't see the cost of living side of things. Sometimes, the better opportunity financially is to keep your cost of living down and take what would appear to be the lower paying job.