Luck. Talent. I often find myself at the crossroads of both. Too often I convince myself something came my way simply because I was “lucky”. Other times I have the bravado to think something came my way because of my talents. How is it that these two, seemingly opposing ideas can co-exist? Can it be possible that it takes more than a little bit of each to get through this life?
Perhaps it’s the timing of this bewildering, never-ending argument: the month of March. “Pink Hearts, Yellow Moons, Orange Stars, Green Clovers and Blue Diamonds” Ahhh... Lucky Charms! When I was a kid, if there was a box of this in our house, it meant one of two things: I had stolen it from my neighbor or a child-support check had magically materialized in the mailbox meaning we could buy name-brand junk food for a hot minute!
Green Clovers. The Luck of the Irish. The month of March. Luck or Talent?
This past weekend was a bit gray and quiet and so I took advantage of both and binge-watched a few documentaries. I must confess, I have an obsession with documentaries. I tend to go in phases that bounce between people and food – my two dominant interests in life. On Saturday, it was people, specifically people in “The Biz”.
I won’t even try in this limited space of a blog to cover all three, but I will say this: all three of these individuals spoke of luck and talent and the vast space between both. There were stories of incredible luck, like when Jerry Weintraub was a very green concert promoter who landed Elvis and then shortly thereafter Sinatra. How he trusted his instincts for both and many others after them. Or when Nora Ephron chose, as one of her last pieces of work, a story about a journalist who as she felt, was more lucky than talented – perhaps a subtle nod to who she really believed herself to be in many ways. And then Mike Nichols, who told the story of iconic songs chosen for the film The Graduate, and the luck of each working perfectly. He talked specifically about his deep understanding of following instinct, intuition and trusting the unconscious and the not knowing.
I’m glad for the detour down the road of these three individual lives because I was reminded of so many variables not just in the business of show, but the business of life. To have a better understanding of all things from those who have gone before allows me to calm down a bit, check in with myself and pay attention. I know I’m lucky. I know I’m talented. And I know for sure that this life IS Magically Delicious.