Act accordingly

“You have exactly one life in which to do everything you’ll ever do. Act Accordingly.” – Colin Wright.

This statement from Colin Wright is one of the deepest I came across within the last months. It is short, crisp and brings it to the point. Act accordingly! Problem is, I do not so far. And this raises several questions immediately. One of them is ‘why not?’. Another one is ‘What would I need to change in my life to do so?’. Looks like I need to find some answers … the journey has just started …

Do you act accordingly?

Schroedinger’s turd

I have to admit, the word “turd” is one of my favorite English nouns. Well, I don’t use it often, almost never, but I like it’s simplicity. It’s simple, crisp, and gets to the point with only four letters. In my mother language the same noun requires twelve letters!

So, let me take you back to my early years, a time back in the past where I considered myself as young. My parents had a cat. Well, they had several cats since the mice hunter somehow got replaced all the time if a cat had lost the trial of courage to cross the street in front of our home. And, for some reason these cats lost all their seven lives at once. Even if only one letter separates cat and car, the weight difference seemed to consume more than one life in case of an impact. But lets focus on the still living object. Such a cat is a rather lazy creature. Some specimen are even too lazy to walk to the designated box to take a dump. This furry creature had fun to place aforementioned turds at special places, like the living room carpet. And it wasn’t always laziness, it had been bitchiness too at times. This claw-equipped evilness did know exactly what she is allowed to do and what not.

After such an incident my mom usually tried to convince cat-woman that the turd location is sub-optimal and removed the corpus delicti. Now, the cat learned somehow to avoid the post-turd-speech. Simple trick, just drop the landmine when mom wasn’t around. Bad idea, since I have been lazy too and tried to avoid to come to close to the little brown mountain. But nonetheless the excrement brought my organ of smell into trouble. I have no idea what happens within such a cat, but the result is smelling breath-taking. Unfortunately time forced a decision soon, which is either passing out or resuming breathing. Interestingly the option to remove the emission source didn’t come to my mind 😉

So, the misery was huge. What to do? Exactly, becoming creative. So what did I do, I simply placed a bucket over the core of the harassment. Simple trick to move the turd outside the range of vision and smell. I was so proud of myself and I never understood why mom didn’t like this approach 😉

Now, a few decades later I know why. I simply missed a step in the process. Let me explain. Some time ago a brilliant mind lived. He answered to the name of Erwin. Looks like mom Schroedinger liked this name. But anyway, this guy tried to plan the perfect crime. Simple approach. If the accuser can’t prove that the murder victim is really dead, there will be no prosecution. Brilliant! And he did some experiments regarding to this, e.g. with cats. And he made astonishing progress. He almost reached his goal, but then curiousness won and he looked into the box, which destroyed the perfect crime. But (raised index finger), for some time the cat was simultaneously dead and alive. Awesome.

Now let’s apply this phenomena of quantum mechanics to my turd bucket. if you inject fly eggs into the brown pulpy material in pre-bucket state, then you end up with a similar effect. The emerging flies under the bucket might consume the turd to a certain extent over time, which reduces the typical turd effluvium (Lets ignore the smell emitted by dead or alive flies for simplicity reasons). So, to a certain point in time the turd is simultaneously smelling and not smelling. Visually spoken and simplified, half the turd has been smelling. And now think about it. This way the smell under the bucket has been reduced by 50%! How awesome is that! And now think further. Lets bring an iterative process into the game. Yeah, bisection! Just a few iterations will be required to bring the smell below human odor detection threshold. The non-smelling cat turd, that’s probably worth a patent. But unfortunately I didn’t know these simple physical correlations to the point in time I needed the knowledge. It would have been so easy if my mom would have taught me quantum mechanics instead of grumbling about my bucket approach.

Physics is awesome, isn’t it?


You know, some people are more decisive than others. This means some of you are able to make quick decisions and some of you are able to make quick and nonetheless good decisions, some of you just need more time and the possibility to evaluate all involved arguments, pro’s and con’s, possible impacts, … and some of you are just procrastinating decisions and wait until the time decides. Whatever works best for you in whatever situation.

I am for example the evaluative decision type. I am trying to get as much information as possible to make a good decision. And usually I get too much information which balances out the pro’s and con’s and forces me to make a gut decision nonetheless, which I could have made already right in the beginning. But, to see it positive, I’ve learned something during the process.

But listen, I mean read, at times, it might be necessary to decide quickly. Let me give you a real life example for this. Today morning I was running through the forest to office. Running can be exhausting, depending on your fitness level, environment, personal speed goals, underground, light conditions, motivation bursts due to approaching wild pigs or Blair witch experiences when running at night …. point is, I started breathing. Well I do this usually too, but I started to breath more heavily. And then, suddenly, I saw a fly crossing my path, in the corner of my right eye. Unfortunately the fly decided to cross the road in front of me. Obviously she underestimated my fitness level or overestimated her flying capabilities. Nonetheless she tried. Do you know situations where you see what’s coming next but you are not able to avoid it anymore but your brain is still able to show you what will happen? Exactly. The fly wasn’t strong enough to withstand the air flow from my breathing in. She was just to slow and now guess what, I inhaled the poor creature.

And now, the core of this story. There are initially two options how to proceed. The first option is to spit the foreign body out, the second is to chew and gulp. So a decision has to be made, quickly. And I am sure many of you will go for option one, at least the ones which are not starving at this point in time. But (with raised index finger) here comes the first wisdom. The most obvious option is not in all cases the best one. Think, in case the inhalation step has just started and you don’t have enough air inside you yet to be able to create an airflow into the opposite direction which is strong enough to carry a little winged animal. What will happen then? Exactly, a reflex will force you to breath more and deep in before an air direction change can be initiated. Well some of you might like the buzzing sound within your lungs and if you are happy, the sound waves might interfere and annihilate your tinnitus sound waves. The only caveat is, how to convince the fly of a similar sleeping rhythm as you have. You need to become creative here.

So the decision became a special case depending on the progress of the inhalation. So at times chewing might be the more successful option. But here comes the next problem. How to chew a fly? Not to chew gives her a slow and painful death through gastric acid. The fading and finally silent buzzing will burn into your mind and conscious. So you better give the creature a short and sudden death. But now many questions are emerging. Which teeth to use? One or more precise chewing movements? Do you need to support the fly with your tongue? If yes, how? Will the fly give you dental plague? Questions over questions to be considered before any action can be performed.

And all these considerations have to be done in a split second to make a quick decision. But, on the plus side is, this can be trained. There are enough flies outside in the world. And even better, start slowly and take all the time you need to finally make a good decision. If you need more time, just close your mouth that the creature in charge can’t escape during the decision making process.

So, making quick and good decisions is a constitutional capability. To visualize the necessity of quick decisions, replace the fly with an angry looking hornet.

See 😉

PS: To resolve this, I decided to enrich my breakfast with some additional proteins today. Yay!