What nerve does an underdog possess to start a think tank (or get a clue)?

One of my favorite quotes from Grosse Point Blank (1997), a quintessential film for the cynical Violent Femmes set of which I was a card-carrying member:

Debi: You know what you need?

Marty: What?

Debi: Shakabuku.

Marty: You wanna tell me what that means?

Debi: It’s a swift, spiritual kick to the head that alters your reality forever.

Marty: Oh, that’d be good. I think.

While Debi (Minnie Driver) may have taken some liberties with her conversation with her high school sweetheart turned hit-man (John Cusack) on the Buddhist meaning for “shakabuku”, there is something to be said to dispelling a wrong path…

“When you’re an underdog, you’re forced to try things you would never otherwise have attempted.” – Malcolm Gladwell on 60 Minutes (http://www.cbsnews.com/news/malcolm-gladwell-power-of-the-underdog/)

I would like to replace the introductory clause for my purpose here:

“When you FAIL according to your own terms…”

What is an underdog? Is she just clueless to the insurmountable odds stacked against her? There are systemic forces that bear down on the life chances of all of us, though the vice grip crushes more unfairly on some. Let me make something indelibly clear before I start. I have been an expert at doubting myself and what I can offer the world.  I defined myself as an underdog. I questioned my humidity prone hair on the daily. I questioned whether flare jeans are really passe and make my legs appear short (though I am 5’8”) . I prefer the Wobble over Twerking any day. So what? Grades usually came easily. I have disappointed some along the way. People that I came to admire questioned what I could accomplish. I often pondered if I had anything to offer anything new that the policy world already has sewn up. I have had so many twists and turns that brought me on start Orgcomplexity on a wing and a prayer. Failure has less to do with society’s view of me (though society is not completely off the hook). I could not continue to fail MYSELF by succumbing to the drama of a path that appeared most reasonable. Thus, we have Orgcomplexity.

An allegorical story from childhood:

While watching Hee Haw  (really!!!) with my E-Paw, I would watch the slight wood shavings of my dull number 2 fall adrift as he artfully used this pocket knife to sharpen it. That pencil became something beautiful as Slim Whitman flashed a bright smile across that Solid State TV and I drew pictures of my family. But E-Paw and I convergently understood the pencil’s purpose long before it was whittled. Change was expected and are desirable indeed. Something is asking we grasp and look at a new path altogether. Maybe I really needed a crayon or acrylic pencils. Leveraging change can scare the bejabbers out of you.

Failure is picking up a socially expected square peg after the innovative oval one fails to fit a conventional hole. If you really “need” the oval to work (and the world is not yet with the program), check out the board again. If there is no oval hole, darn it and chuck that board. Find a reamer and create your own or perhaps ask for a refund with no return shipping. Failure is the incessant attempt to satisfy others by hiding that socially acceptable square peg behind your back and asking for a few more days (in dog years) to work it out. Whittling that square peg with that dull pocket knife into a misshapen imposter of an oval peg serves no god. That imposter peg is not flush to the side of the hole. It is surrounded by slight flashes of open space. That open space created around the non-flush peg should extract with a slight tug. Trust me, that tug will be less taxing (a small change in the system) than the linear process that got that wrong peg there in the first place. Health has little time for misshapen imposters.

I do believe that Orgcomplexity does offer something unique. When and if Orgcomplexity ever becomes a leading think tank is yet to be seen. I have a vision for Orgcomplexity that is solidified with every post I write. Right now, I am more secure in me than ever. The words on Orgcomplexity will pop up on some new fangled news engine eons from now. I hope that those words resonate in some fashion and left the world a little better as a result.

Advertisements

About Michele Battle-Fisher

This is an archive of the Orgcomplexity Blog. Please follow me at the following sites: mbattlefisher.wix.com/orgcomplexity Michele Battle-Fisher (Facebook author page) www.linkedin.com/in/mbattlefisher mbattlefisher (Twitter) michele.battle.fisher (Skype) Author Website http://amazon.com/author/michelebattlefisher