Safety Third

My name is Rob, and I refuse to be careful. I bought a new lens this weekend. The transaction was nothing exciting, but the guy that sold it to me said something to me as I was leaving that gave me pause for a second.

"Be careful."

I hadn't really noticed the trend before then, but it's certainly there.

Now, I understand people that care about me saying this sort of thing. it's as if they're saying if you could, please, try not to die before the next time I see you. That's not a completely unreasonable request.

I don't think he had much reason to say such a thing to me. I mean, sure, I was driving an hour and a half back to Huntsville, and driving is "dangerous". I suppose I could have died in a horrific accident on the way home. But, really, what are the odds? They're so insignificant, so minuscule, that I couldn't possibly be bothered to calculate them, much less let them into my conscious thought and distract me from whatever it was I thinking about on the way home.

It's not so much the saying that started me thinking, or even that people are concerned about my well being on a real or superficial level.

It's more about this: When did we as a society become so damn afraid of everything?

When I was a kid I got sprained ankles, and banged up elbows, and skinned knees on a regular basis. I'm sure I suffered more than one concussion playing hockey when I was young. The only time I was told to be careful was when I almost fell off the top of the monkey bars I was walking across, or I almost ate it when standing on the cross-bar of my bike riding down the road.

This was common. Expected, even. Those injuries were how you knew you did something stupid, and, maybe, to be careful next time you try it.

I know this rant is a little bit ridiculous. But seriously, stop being scared.  Stop being careful. Stop worrying about what could go wrong, and just go.

It's worth it.