Two days ago, I had a sandwich from Subway with a friend. Now, anyone who’s eaten there knows how messy the process is. A guy I used to know called it the “Subway test of attraction”. Anyway, for those who haven’t ever eaten at Subway, a little briefing – the subs there are filled to the brim with a lot of veggies, sauces and maybe (depending on the person eating it), meat. It’s next to impossible not to spill when you eat them, resulting in everything dribbling down your chin, onto your clothes and the table top. Not very attractive, no. Not at all, as a matter of fact. They are supremely good, but you need to prepare yourself with a load of tissues. You just do.
While placing our order, my friend asked for extra olives in hers. Her logic being that she knew she was going to lose half of them while eating and she was preparing for that event, so that she still had a sufficient amount left IN her sub for her to eat. Sound and smart, right? It seemed so to me at the time. But then we sat down to eat and sure enough she was spilling most of her olives and struggling to keep the bread together and just generally making a mess, while I seemed to manage my sub just fine. I did spill a lot myself, but that as I’ve said was inevitable.
Which brings me to the point of this post – could the reason why things go wrong in our lives be that we anticipate and plan for the worst? It seems good sense to be prepared and take precautions to prevent a disastrous future, but sometimes I wonder if by doing that we’re provoking destiny to mess with us. If my friend had had the normal amount of olives in hers, and not gone out of her way to make sure there were extra, maybe eating it wouldn't have been so overwhelming and she wouldn’t have struggled to hold the two pieces of bread together and made such a mess of the whole thing. Her logic, while being sound, could also have been the reason for her downfall – metaphorically, of course.
This makes me think that sometimes, maybe planning extensively is the worst thing someone can do. Maybe we should just take it easy and let life take its own course and not meddle with it. I’m not saying we should sit back and wait for things to come to us, or wait for life to take us wherever we want, no. I’m saying have a plan, and work towards it, but don’t plan too far into the future. You will spill your olives, no doubt. It’s inevitable. But you never know how many more olives you might end up spilling, if you think and plan and map out each and every step.