DOING WHAT MATTERS & THE PIZZA DUDE
What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while.
I put that on my original 10,000 days list as one of my goals for my10000days. It’s from The Secrets of Adulthood in the book called The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. It’s a great read. I am working on practicing this secret of adulthood but I am starting small. Focusing on doing the small things that add to my life, and doing them every day, brings me more joy than focusing on that elusive thing that I do once in a while – maybe that once-in-a-while thing is too expensive, too far away or too much to add to my regular routine. So, I am starting small. Playing Legos every night with T. Having breakfast every morning with C & R. Go to sleep earlier every night. Waking up early and running or writing. Simple. And, I can feel the difference three weeks in. But, I think that it’s more than what I do every day, it’s also how I feel. Reading Sarah Adams essay called Be Kind to the Pizza Dude, I am reminded that “what you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while” extends beyond playing, exercising or eating right – it’s also about holding kindness for other people in my heart and being more patient with myself. Sarah figured this out a while ago and sums it up so perfectly, I wish I knew her but in reading her essay I feel like I do. I agree with her philosophy and her principles and her assertion that holding kindness in your heart for other people is how we should be; it’s what matters and what I should be doing every day and not once in a while. Enjoy.
Be Cool to the Pizza Dude by Sarah Adams
If I have one operating philosophy about life, it is this: “Be cool to the pizza dude, it’s good luck.” Four principles guide the pizza dude philosophy.
Principle 1: Coolness to the pizza dude is a practice in humility and forgiveness. I let him cut me off in traffic, let him safely hit the exit ramp from the left lane, let him forget to use his blinker without extending any of my digits out the window or toward my horn because there should be one moment in my harried life when a car can encroach or cut off or pass and I let it go. Sometimes when I have become so certain of my ownership of my lane, daring anyone to challenge me, the pizza dude speeds by in his rusted Chevette. His pizza light atop his car glowing like a beacon reminds me to check myself as I flow through the world. After all, the dude is delivering pizza to young and old, families and singletons, gays and straights, blacks, whites, browns, rich and poor, and vegetarians and meat lovers alike. As he journeys, I give safe passage, practice restraint, show courtesy, and contain my anger.
Principle 2: Coolness to the pizza dude is a practice in empathy. Let’s face it: We’ve all taken jobs just to have a job because some money is better than none. I’ve held an assortment of these jobs and was grateful for the paycheck that meant I didn’t have to share my Cheerios with my cats. In the big pizza wheel of life, sometimes you’re the hot bubbly cheese and sometimes you’re the burnt crust. It’s good to remember the fickle spinning of that wheel.
Principle 3: Coolness to the pizza delivery dude is a practice in honor, and it reminds me to honor honest work. Let me tell you something about these dudes: They never took over a company and, as CEO, artificially inflated the value of the stock and cashed out their own shares, bringing the company to the brink of bankruptcy, resulting in twenty thousand people losing their jobs while the CEO builds a home the size of a luxury hotel. Rather, the dudes sleep the sleep of the just.
Principle 4: Coolness to the pizza delivery dude is a practice in equality. My measurement as a human being, my worth, is the pride I take in performing my job – any job – and the respect with which I treat others. I am the equal of the world not because of the car I drive, the size of the TV I own, the weight I can bench-press, or the calculus equations I can solve. I am the equal to all I meet because of the kindness in my heart. And it all starts here – with the pizza delivery dude.
Tip him well, friends and brethren, for that which you bestow freely and willingly will bring you all the happy luck that a grateful universe knows how to return.
Thank you Sarah Adams. Thanks also to my friend LD for sharing this great essay with me – and the book I borrowed it from: This I Believe – The personal philosophies of remarkable men and women. Edited by Jay Allison and Dan Gediman in association with NPR.