Friday, June 18, 2010

Life Down The Toilet

Not a pretty thought, is it?  But, how many times have we reached points in our lives when we felt like our life was in the tank?  We all know that life has its ups and downs, its peaks and valleys.  I've come to decide that I am content when life is "boring", because it's the roller coaster ride that is so hard!

Focusing on the "downs" or "valleys", how often do we stay stuck ... by our own doing?  It makes me think of a news story a while ago of a Frenchman who got his arm stuck in a train toilet after dropping his cell phone into the lovely blue water.

Train halted as man's arm trapped in toilet

A high-speed rail route in Franch was halted after a passenger's arm was trapped down a toilet, it was reported today. 

France Info radio said the passenger had dropped his mobile phone down the pan and had been trying to retrieve it. 

But the TGV train's toilets operate with a powerful suction mechanism, and his arm was trapped.

Firefighters reportedly had to remove him with the loo still attached to his arm before they could cut it free. 

The BBC website said that the train had been travelling in western France from La Rochelle to Bordeaux and that the service had been halted for two hours for the rescue. 

The passenger was said to have escaped with only a painful elbow. 
... and I imagine he must have "escaped" with a sorely bruised ego as the rescue workers paraded him past the waiting crowd.

The story made me laugh, made me empathize ... and got me to thinking about how we often get so focused on something like that cell phone -- important, expensive -- and yet we get carelessWe get distracted and lose our grip on something -- a loved one, family, work -- and let things drop.  

What have you "dropped in the toilet?"

Think of the desperation of the man willing to stick his arm in that oh-so-public toilet.  I wouldn't hesitate to take such action with my own toilet at home, but a PUBLIC toilet!!!!  YUUUUCK!!!!  I would have let it go -- not bothered retrieving it.  But, obviously that cell phone was veeeeeery important to that guy.

Think about that desperate act: willing to stick your arm in something that gross for a cell phone.  Are we sometimes in the same position as that guy, grasping at something and winding up getting stuck in some dreadful situation?  We lose focus on what is going on around us, forgetting the inherent risks of grasping at something we've "dropped", giving up our disdain and caving in to the willingness to get dirty -- the willingness to relinquish our dignity. 

And, like the Frenchman, we get caught -- trapped.  After suffering all the indignation of that desperate grab, we get stuck.  Someone must come to rescue us or else we remain in the clutches of the trap.  We pray that the rescue can be done in private, but sometimes the rescue is embarrassingly public ... maybe even causing a lot of annoyance and frustration to the witnesses to our "fall from grace" and our "tumble into the mire." 

The other day I posted about the Monkey Trap, where a monkey winds up getting his little hand caught in a gourd, unwilling to let go of a morsel of food.  This toilet situation is very similar.  In both scenarios, we are unwilling to let go of something, no matter how mucky the situation.

What are you grasping for?  Could you wind up getting trapped?  Is it worth getting trapped?  Are you trapped now by something? 

... And do you have the guts to call for help, even at the risk of suffering embarrassment?

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