Friday, July 24, 2015


At work I listen to a Pandora station called "Emancipator" to blot out chatty colleagues. I wouldn't know how to define the station, but Pandora describes it as "heavy use of samples, electronica roots, R&B influences; headnodic beats."

Anyway, a sample from this song caught my attention recently:

Our language, you might say our language lacks a word.
We have the word: impossible.
But we need to differentiate between two sorts of things.
The impossible is that which, by definition can never be done.
We need another word -- unpossible --
that which can't be done just yet.
-- The Unpossible by  Kaleidoscope Jukebox
Unpossible? That concept resounded in me.

When I first started racing my bicycle, Mike Munson was the best cyclist I knew. He was a seasoned cat 2 racer, with lots of palmares. Me? I was a newbie with spotty cat 5 results. I would sometimes wonder, would I ever get there? I had my doubts. My lackluster cat 5 results were proof enough. It seemed very unlikely at the time. I might have even considered it was impossible.

Obviously, that wasn't true. It wasn't that it was impossible, but more that it was just not possible yet.

I've been thinking a lot about what's possible lately. I have wondered how often I've sold myself short, or given up on some dreams I once had. Maybe it's only a matter of redirecting my thinking from what was once considered unattainable, to not attainable just yet.

Now, I'm not suggesting that I can accomplish anything I set my mind to. There are the laws of physics to deal with. Only in the movies could those laws be abandoned. But even there, I'd probably still have my doubts. For example, let's say that I was in the Star Wars Universe. As much as I'd enjoy raising an X-Wing fighter from a Dagobah swamp as the next padawan, I would probably agree with Luke Skywalker and also say that it was too big, and dismiss it as impossible.

Sidebar: As I typed that, I could hear Yoda's voice in my head grumbling, "and that is why you fail".

Anyway, there are some things worth revisiting. I'll be challenging myself to think of the potential, rather than the impossible. I will look for how to reach a difficult goal, rather than blindly dismiss it because I felt it was unattainable.

Who knows. Perhaps one day in the future, in a galaxy far, far away, I'll be standing on some exoplanet's swampy surface with an Astromech droid and a little green dude by my side. With my one arm extended, an X-Wing fighter will be gliding effortlessly above us as the John Williams orchestra -- also levitated from my other extended arm -- will be filling the air with a musical crescendo so beautiful it makes one weep. At that moment, I will look with confidence at my little green buddy and say, "I once thought this was merely unpossible."

And in reply, he will grin and say, "And that is why you have succeeded."

Happy Friday. Thanks for reading.


  1. There's another song by Steve Martin that has the lyrics "It's impossible ... to shove a Cadillac up your nose, it's just impossible" Maybe it's actually unpossible.

  2. I wonder what the song creater think when they make this song.