Beer and Wisdom: Second Chance for First Place

second chance for first place

Beer and Wisdom, two things that don’t often intersect. Many a man has poured himself a drink to have what he believes to be an insightful conversation.  What they come closer to, ends up being the liquor based ramblings of a mad man. But this episode, conversely, is an exercise in moderation.  Here’s the premise…I pour one beer.  When the 12oz bottle of golden magic runs dry, so will the words thrown down on paper.  Today’s article discusses failure followed by getting back up and taking another shot at first place.


I sit today and crack open a bottle of rather interesting beer; Mas Agave from Founders brewing.  I am a big fan of tequila and this bad boy is aged in tequila barrels! Count me in!  It’s a sour ale which packs the taste of a fine margarita.  It’s super smooth and brings a 10% ABV, holy cow!  Ill be spewing out pure wordsmith “gold” in no time.  The wisdom I hope to share, takes me from the delicious brew in front of me to a rather not-so-sexy topic.  Failure.  Although I’ve been knocked down several times in life, sometimes it gets to be a little much.

It should be no surprise to you, that things haven’t always come that easy to me.  I was not gifted in intelligence, speed, or strength.  There was never anything handed to me without some kind of fight or struggle.  And -in no way shape or form- is anything I strive for in the future going to be any different.  Truth is, I need to work twice as hard as the guy next to me to simply compete.  And, really, that’s okay.  I have grown very accustomed to that.

No stranger to failure

I am no stranger to failure, it visits me often.  Even when I am sure I have the skill-sets to dominate a challenge, failure may just make an appearance and serve up a humble pie.  However, I can honestly say that I am not used to it.  It still crushes my soul at times; having something so close only to have it taken away.  It can prove very difficult to spot silver linings in such seemingly fruitless endeavors.  Especially, when it seems to occur often.  So, at times, I become tired of being humbled.  I become tired of congratulating another victor.  I become tired of standing back up.  I become tired of self-assessing to find those weaknesses.  I just would like for once to achieve something great without all the work, failure and stress.  For once, I’d like to be a natural at “success”.

What’s the alternative?

“Nothing without great effort”

I heard this quote once.  It’s seems to find its way into my life every now and then.  Sometimes, it’s worded differently, but still delivers the same message.  “ You get what you give”, which is the other common variation.  And, as far as I can tell, I give and I endure only to find a dead end.  Frustrating?  You bet.  Tiring?  Yes!  But, the alternative is far worse.  The alternative is to stop enduring.  To stop putting in the work.  The alternative is to become comfortable in a stagnant life.  The alternative is to stay down and out, giving in to the critics.  It is to lose all sense of progress and become okay with being in an idle state.  The alternative is to allow your doubts to solidify into legitimate weakness.  It’s true, a human can convince themselves how horrible they are in a second.  The alternative is to blame and harbor anger for those who have succeeded where you failed.  The alternative is to break.

Movement forward

So, I may be bruised and battered.  Life has given me a whole new set of punches in the stomach.  However, movement forward is the only movement I aim to continue.  Movement forward is the only way I know.  I am destined to bandage myself up, take a deep breath and move.

Maybe I don’t comport myself in a way that would be seen as honorable in failure.  Maybe, I sometimes act out of my character for just a little bit.  Well, that’s okay.  The world doesn’t need to be spared from your occasional fist shaking toward the sky.  I have shaken many a fist at the sky in hopes it would bring some kind of sense of accomplishment, but alas it hasn’t.  Sometimes, our emotions are worn right on the sleeve for all to see.  But it’s only human to lose it.  Only the fastest processing computer rationalizes the data quickly enough to bypass emotion.  Not this guy.

But…once the tantrum is over, attack.  Keep moving forward.  Get better.  Become stronger.  It’s the only way to truly defeat the failure.  Do it and do it now.  Do not let it consume you.  Don’t make the fist shaking at the heavens be your default setting.  Move and improve.  It’s not all you can do, but its the best you can do.  It’s all you should do.  Fuck failure.  Fuck failure right in its stupid face.  Get back up and be ready.

Well, the bottle has run dry.  I sit here thinking about the words above.  In no way are they designed in hopes of attracting pity.  Pity is just what you seek when you’ve given up.  No, the words above are rooted in the hope that you see failure as an opportunity, yet acknowledge how badly it can suck.  To that end…I’ll tell you what doesn’t suck, this beer.  I hope these words made sense and bring some peace to your own failures.  Now get out there and crush it!

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