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Honoré Victorin Daumier:
“- Mr. Alfred Cabassol! You are the only one in the class who succeeded
to get through the entire week without blowing your nose into your sleeve.
Please stand to receive this prize of honour for cleanliness,”
plate 6 from Professeurs Et Moutards

" … moving forward, if not necessarily ahead."

Given the human tendency toward dissatisfaction, I suspect that the average Satiability of the typical Success seeker might be measured in minuscule quantities, hours and days rather than months and years, but I could be wrong. I know, or think I know, that when pursuing Success, I tend to get very single-minded, as if that objective was the whole of my existence and the satisfaction I'll experience will approach infinite. After, and often even just after achieving it, I feel more of an "Oh, Is That All?" sort of sensation before going back into trolling for yet another infinite-seeming satisfaction, which will, of course, fall short of expectation once delivered. Around and around and around, I go. You might go around like this, too.

Some Success seems more sticky.
I hope to never lose touch with the sensation I felt after my book was published and that delivery truck dropped off my copies. I hand-trucked them into the basement as if that chapter was finally finished and permanent. I've been dragging along the remnants through moves and returns for twenty years now, my pride still essentially undiminished. I can testify to only a few such experiences in my decades and Successes. Most extinguished far sooner than I'd beforehand imagined.

This might be the human condition reporting for duty again, that we motivate ourselves primarily by pursuing what will usually be short-lived infinities. We seem to firmly believe that we might permanently resolve things and that these Successes might satiate that need to fix. Most of us might become more accustomed to pursuing than ever grow leery of Succeeding such that we're more than ready to initiate another pursuit as the reward for Successfully completing that last one, which apparently carried a Satiability quotient of close to zero once completed.

I will not complain about this curious practice. If a person's happy chasing rainbows, whatever happens, once they catch one is nobody else's business. I believe that we should pursue with that satisfying single-mindedness, and also with a healthy dose of nearly absolute cluelessness, for over-analyzing potential effect or result seems to contribute nothing to the satisfaction experienced when finally Succeeding. Some will most certainly complain that you just achieved another Pyrrhic Success, but only because they never had access to the sensations you felt as the pursuer of that Success. It might even be that we mostly—usually—achieve little in return once we accomplish any Success. In that case, especially, benevolent cluelessness might be most helpful. Our dissatisfactions keep us moving forward, if not necessarily ahead.

©2023 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved

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