They train relentlessly – that’s just a requirement of getting into the game …
I was driving down the street, minding my own business, and I ran into someone.
Running into things, yes, I love that phrase.
I was working on a project, but I kept running into problems.
I was downtown yesterday, and I ran into Joe.
I watched some programs on the History channel the other night – replaying memories of 9/11 events; some were re-runs, some were first-runs, and there was a recurrent theme – people running into trouble. Not just first-responders running into burning buildings, but passengers on a plane running into the cockpit heroics too.
People run into trouble, people take a run at problems – and it’s never casual or trivial, no room for half-heartedness. We respect and admire that, whether someone is putting their life on the line or not because it shows determination and selflessness on a scale most of us never encounter or have to do.
Several decades ago, I dated an emergency-room nurse for a while, and I learned the term adrenaline-junkie – about people who deal with, and thrive on, the frenetic nature of life-saving.
After watching those documentaries about 9/11, reliving those memories, and re-watching those heroic actions – there were then, as there is now, many millions of people who run into burning buildings, plunge into turning around failing businesses or floundering governments. Nobody wants to perish in the process, but the risk of perishing isn’t what it’s about; it’s not what they are doing. It’s not suicidal at all; it’s heart-thumping adrenaline aided in pursuing what you’ve been trained for.
So, the world is at peace mostly, but fighting a virus-war which will characterize this decade no less than 9/11 marked its decade, and I ask this of you and of myself: what are we training for?
We could be training for a great long race, or to turn some problem into a success, we could be training for a life of joy, or to avoid a life of trouble, but we should be training our body, or brain, or character to know what to do when a crisis shows up.
If the building next door spontaneously erupts in flames, do you run in to save someone – or run away to protect yourself? Or do you call 911 first, and then do everything you can to help?
9/11 and 911 are extreme danger signals, but I think they are better as metaphors for being prepared, for getting ourselves prepared, for what comes next.
And something always comes next.
There will always be a tomorrow, but sadly too many won’t be prepared for it. They won’t have trained for it …