Embracing the Whack-A-Mole Philosophy of Life

Sorry – I forgot to shave today.

 

Cross that bridge when you come to it.
Let tomorrow take care of itself.
Que sera, sera.
Don’t borrow trouble.

These are all good mottos, but not for me.

I’ve always been a worrywart.  I’ll get a troublesome “what-if” between my teeth and chew on it like a dog with a bone.  

This approach isn’t working for me, though.   I’m not very good at it.  After investing countless hours worrying about something, downing bottles of Tums along the way, that particular problem rarely materializes.

There was that time I preworried a plane crash and it almost happened, but I think I just got lucky there.  I’m not usually that accurate.

This has been especially true with parenting.  My kids are just about out of the nest now, and neither seems to be too badly messed up.  This despite decisions we made which I feared were huge mistakes.

For example, when Liz was in first grade I agonized over whether or not we should have a birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese and invite the entire class.  The pressure to conform to the “cool” norm was already intense, at least for us moms.  I was worried if I didn’t hold the party there, this would be the misstep that condemned Liz to the social pits for her entire, grade school career.  She would be unpopular and unloved, and would be firmly and irrevocably set on the career path of Axe Murderer.   She chose Marketing, instead.

Don’t get me wrong.  Although the things I worry about don’t often happen, that doesn’t mean I don’t get hit.  I’ve had run-ins with lots of lousy stuff; it’s just stuff I didn’t see coming.

While I’m driving down life’s highway, keeping an eagle eye out for the Chevy of Dreadful Possibilities in front of me…BAM! I get sideswiped by the Lamborghini of Unexpected Calamity. The experience leaves me wearing the neck brace of Unforeseen (and largely Unavoidable) Consequences. The other driver is usually uninsured.

Since Dog With A Bone hasn’t worked too well for me as a life philosophy, I’ve decided to adopt a new one. I’m going to hand in my Eeyore Pessimist Club membership card (I’m a charter member) and embrace my inner Pollyanna.

Here is my new philosophy and mantra:

The Whack-A-Mole Philosophy of Life:

You can’t knock a problem down until it actually comes up. Until then, the best you can do is stay alert and keep a hammer handy.

OK, OK. I know this is not exactly the mantra of a dewy-eyed optimist, but let’s face it – that wouldn’t be me. It’s certainly more positive than my current approach, and might even save me an ulcer.

I don’t know if it is possible to change one’s basic outlook on life at my age, but I’m going to try.  And if I fall back into the old habits and start worrying about stuff I can’t control?  I’ll whack that mole when I come to it.

Advertisements

About pegoleg

R-A-M-B-L-I-N-G-S, Ram...Blin!
This entry was posted in General Ramblings and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

60 Responses to Embracing the Whack-A-Mole Philosophy of Life

  1. bigsheepcommunications says:

    Let me know if this works for you. If it does, I’m going out to buy myself a hammer. (BTW, you look hot in those red shoes!)

    Like

  2. Tori Nelson says:

    YES! YES! Whack A Mole is the one and only game I don’t completely fail at. There is hope for me yet 🙂

    Like

  3. k8edid says:

    Love the outfit and the chin hairs…Whack a Mole is a great philosophy…it may replace “Shit Happens”.

    Like

  4. Whack a Mole sounds like an intriguingly different recipe for guacamole! Or at least that’s what popped into my head when I read the title…
    Thanks for the humor! Worry is something I am doing a lot of at the moment (with good reason) but it’s always good to smile. 🙂

    Like

  5. Al says:

    This idea is so whacky, it just might work!

    Like

  6. This is a great philosophy — and I love Whack-A-Mole! What a great way to look at life. It’s the perfect alternative to the pre-worrying you mentioned. Brilliant. I’ll have to remember this one, Peg. It helps that you added a visual aid. I see you forgot to shave, but at least you applied your lipstick.

    Like

  7. So…
    that SUV I saw the other day with the ‘W-A-M’ plates?!
    🙂

    Like

  8. Sandy Sue says:

    Drear and Dire just doesn’t fit my image of you (though Rueful and Snide does, for some odd reason). Just remember to enjoy the Vista while you wait for the moles to pop up.

    Like

  9. I LOVE IT!!! Sounds like a philosophy that will work. I don’t actually play the game though… it always seemed so abusive to animals even if only stuffed animals… the game is too violent for me ~ the philosophy works.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Carol, you ‘ol softy, only a very few arcades still use real, live moles. So don’t worry! (see what I did there? Don’t worry? It’s the philosophy in action!)

      Like

  10. I use the Whack-A-Mole analogy liberally in my life. Only I never knew what it was called. So I would say, “You know when those little things keep popping up and you have to keep smashing them down except when you smash one down another one comes up?” and the person I would be talking to would have left the room. So thank you for this post title and for the post. But the absolute best person to crash into your car is some rich old guy whose mistress is sitting in the front seat next to him and the only thing he can do is send you a big fat check in the mail and hope it’s so big that you won’t tell his wife. I know this is true because Then Husband and I had the cash to prove it.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Now when you espouse the philosophy you can get it out quicker by saying “the Whack-a-Mole philosophy, (a creation of Peg-o-Leg, copyright 2012, all rights reserved, patent pending. Peg-o-Leg is a division of Peg Co.)”. Or maybe they’ll still get out of the room before you’re done.

      Wow, that is some great life advice there! I’m going to switch my favorite get-rich quick scheme from “hop on the city bus right after it crashes” to the “get hit by a rich old geezer with a young floozy” scheme right away! (geezer scheme is a creation of Renee at Life in the Boomer Lane, copyright 2012….

      Like

  11. Love the Whack-A-Mole picture! LOL 😀
    I’m operating on three brain cells today due to lack of sleep, but all three of them are standing up and cheering for you!

    Like

  12. Deep stuff…now I’m going to have to look at myself a bit longer and figure out how I see life, but first, I have to take care of tomorrow’s problem before it actually happens.

    Like

  13. Carla says:

    I’ve always had slow reflexes with Whack-A-Mole. I see it pop up, but then I just whack the hole instead of the mole. Same way with Frogger. I get hit by the trucks and jump into the water or the crocodile’s mouth. That said, I tend to have a pretty quick sarcastic hammer I lug around for whacking “holes”, if you know what I mean. Maybe, I should have been wearing red heels and letting my leg hairs grow out like broom straws when I was learning to play those games. 🙂 Love this post!

    Like

  14. Elyse says:

    Great idea, Peg. And when you get too tired, you can always unplug the Whack-A-Mole and take a break.

    Like

  15. Dana says:

    That’s actually a catchy, accessible way to rephrase the new-agey “be like water” mantra. (I.e. (she launches into a new-agey speech) If you are going to drop a pebble into a pond, the pond doesn’t brace itself for impact or worry about how everything will be affected once the pebble comes down. Also, when the pebble finally IS dropped, the pond doesn’t over- or underreact to the impact.) Whack-A-Mole is such a better way to think about this!

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Wow – that is very new-agey. But you don’t think water overreacts? When you consider all the ripples that go out…one area gets bothered by a pebble and half the pond has to deal with the fallout. It’s like my family who gets the ripples after I’ve had a bad day at work.

      Like

      • Tar-Buns says:

        Amen, Sister! I hear ya, do it myself, know it and can’t seem to stop that incessant critic, aka “helper”, we were raised AND praised to do, thus we do it in our relationships. I’ve caught myself in this yarn. Yikes! Freud is entering my mantra…..

        Like

  16. notquiteold says:

    I like the whack-a-mole philosophy…but it kind of reminds me of the way I played chess (back when I tried to play chess). I couldn’t develop a strategy. All I could do was react to what the other guy did. I could hold my own that way for a while, but in the end I always lost.
    But – on the other hand – the NOT WORRYING part is excellent!

    Like

  17. pattisj says:

    Worry doesn’t look good on you Peg, or maybe it is just the facial hair? Anyway, you’re better off without it.

    Like

  18. I am currently working on changing my mantra so this came at the perfect time, Pegoliciousness! I like the idea of being ready for anything, then beating the crap out of it when it arises–it must really build the muscles. Just hope I have a big enough hammer…

    (by the way…now I’m not getting your blog in my feed. I have to click on your name. WordPress is slowly cutting me off, I can feel it…)

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      You’ll be the muscle-bound god of the hammer – we’ll call you Thor!

      I’ve heard of others having problems with their subscriptions acting up, and I know that one of mine has dropped off. What are they doing to us???

      Like

      • Yes, everyone’s blogs are slowly slipping away from my feed. I never get Paul’s, then Joe’s, now yours. What, does WP think I can actually keep up with new blog posts by stalking everyone? That wouldn’t be very polite. But if I must….

        Like

  19. Aren’t moles blind? Peg, are you really going after little blind critters with a hammer? Have you thought this through? 😉

    Like

  20. Whack-Thwack- I feel better already! Good thing that mallet thingy has a rope on it or I might just take on the world with it…but then, I still remember my brother introducing us to this game out in CA…I loved watching him play…just a pounding away…and then I watched him chuckling, chuckling the rest of the day making me think it wasn’t such a bad, violent game after all.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      You’re giving me all sorts of great marketing ideas for this. I’ll give seminars on Whack-A-Mole and sell rubber hammers on a rope as a visual aid to my followers. How does $39.99 sound?

      Like

      • Tar-Buns says:

        I see the price of your inventions is going up. Hmmmmm…. 🙂
        And, yes, it is difficult to shut up the ‘helper’ at times. Even if I don’t say it out loud, I’m stuck with it bugging me in my mind. Geez….

        Like

  21. Barb says:

    I love whacking things. Besides…it burns calories.

    Like

  22. gojulesgo says:

    Pegggg, I know this post is about optimism, but what the deuce, this post never came up in my WordPress reader (I actually just typed your URL into my browser because not seeing anything from you in a few days seemed fishy)!??! This is happening to me with other blogs, and Deb said the same thing. Do you think WordPress is testing us after our attempt to dominate their website??

    But back to the matter at hand – I love the whack-a-mole philosophy. I definitely am a worry-wart, too. And isn’t it crazy how kids’ birthday parties have gotten?? Even when I was a kid I remember the whole “do you invite the whole class” debate (I never did – I don’t know that it was up to me, but I don’t think I wanted all those brats there, LOL).

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      I’ve been having a problem with hit-or-miss with my subscriptions also. WordPress gods, what are you trying to do to us?????? Maybe it is retribution for the coup attempt, even though they didn’t bother to show up for our takeover. I’m still a little bitter about that.

      There seem to be a lot of us worriers out that. That has be worried.

      Like

  23. Angie Z. says:

    I’m uplifted by your mantra. I am very much a Freddie Fretter (Do you like that? I just made it up. I know, brilliant, right.) and a Debbie Downer (Trademark SNL) all rolled into one. I need more moles to whack to keep me from freaking out over the possibility of lead in my water or a tumor in my foot or a cancellation of Mad Men. I want to whack those moles into oblivion.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      A foot tumor is one of the few things I’ve never worried about. Now that I think of it, that might not be a bunion on the side there. Hm…going to get hammer.

      Like

  24. Margie says:

    Once you are over 60 you can trade in your ‘Whack-a-Mole” philosophy for the “I Don’t Give a Sh*t” one. It is remarkably liberating.

    Like

  25. Libby says:

    Are you using that fake tanning lotion on your legs? They are looking rather orange-ie. Maybe toss out that bottle and try a tanning bed instead… and shave those gams, for goodness sake!!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s