05 June 2008

Gretzkyaciousness/Dwelling on the Obvious

I know nothing about hockey. Less than nothing. I don't even know how many innings are in a hockey game. I leave stuff like that to people like Sean.

But I do know a good Zen quote when I hear it. Wayne Gretzky, a famous hockey linebacker, said:

"I skate to where I think the puck will be."

Well, of course he skates to where he thinks the puck will be. If he skated somewhere else all the time, they'd have fired him.

"Dammit, WAYNE! Put down those nachos and go get that puck!"

[Insert the jaded voice of Maria Sharapova's Pomeranian here] Yes, yes. He skates to where the puck will be.

How totally obvious, right?

And, yet, not so much.

Anybody who can skate*, can skate to where the puck is.

But, literally and figuratively, how do you skate to where the puck will be? How do you freakin' know where the puck will be?

I figure the minimal skills/knowledge involved to be Gretzkyacious are:

Physical Agility, as discussed: Gotta be able to skate, weave and duck so you don't get a stick to the head, etc.

People Skills: Gotta know what your goof-ball teammates and your wily opponents are likely to do.

Chess Skills: Gotta be able to think a few moves ahead, but without the pocket protector.

Odds Making Skills: Gotta figure out the most likely scenario at any given moment (read: like a gazillion times in a game.)

Calculus/Physics Knowledge: Gotta determine the puck trajectory and Derbler's thwak ratio.

Intuition: That Jambi feeling that lands in your gut and you just know.

So, yeah, Gretzky skated to where he thought the puck would be. But this isn't about hockey. This is about the broader application. Because a Zen quote is only truly mind-blowingly Zen if you can apply it to all aspects of life.

So, figuratively speaking, if, in your own life, you can figure out how to skate to where you think the puck will be, and do it reasonably well on a regular basis, life, in turn, will be all cheese danish and Prosecco (read: a very good thing.)

That's all you need to do. Skate to where you think the puck will be.

How totally obvious, right?

So, um, good luck with that.

* This would include me if I didn't have ankles as sturdy as cottage cheese.


Gilahi said...

I don't like cheese danish. Could I just skate to where I think the prosecco will be?

Dixie said...

What if you can't skate?

Bilbo said...

This is the most amazing piece of overanalysis I've ever read that wasn't paid for by a $75 million Congressional earmark. And it's worth more than such an earmark. Very entertaining...I loved it!

lacochran said...

Gilahi: Sounds like sound reasoning to me. Every skating rink should have a Prosecco bar.

Dixie: See the section on broader application. I think you have all sorts of Gretzkyacious you're not showing.

Bilbo: You mean I can get paid for this? Who knew! Please remit check immediately!

Bilbo said...

It's in the mail...