Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Donut Day!

As you travel through life, my brother,
Whatever be your goal
Keep your eye upon the donut
And not upon the hole.

Years ago I saw this sign in a donut shop and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It was such a simple idea, yet so powerful. It certainly left an impression on me. The idea is to focus on what is and not what might be missing. Without the absence of donut in the middle it would not be a donut. Keep your eye upon the donut and not upon the hole. Indeed, look for the good in things and don’t dwell on what is missing. What a beautiful and simple idea.

Fans of Caddyshack will remember Chevy Chase’s character, the club’s most talented golfer - Ty Webb, offering a little philosophy lesson to his caddy.”Don't be obsessed with your desires Danny. The Zen philosopher Basha once wrote, 'A flute with no holes, is not a flute. A donut with no hole, is a Danish.' He was a funny guy.” The Caddyshake philosophy lesson is perhaps lost in the comedic representation of that practice round of golf with his caddy, but the character of Ty Webb is sort of inspirational in his carefree approach to life.

I was visiting with cousins in New England when I was introduced to a family tradition. My cousin Philip would wake up and stir the household on any given Saturday morning with the joyful declaration. “Get up, it’s donut day, yeah!” His kids were just toddlers then and his wife Deena shared the glee of this routine. She knew the kids would be thrilled to take a trip to the local donut shop and select a fresh baked donut. What to do: glazed, sprinkles, frosted or plain? It didn’t matter really. It struck me even then that it was not only about the donut itself, but the entire experience of donut day from the break of dawn through the last delicious bite. It was fun.

My wife is an expert baker. It is fun to see how excited people get just looking over her products. Scones, cookies, muffins, biscotti – everything she does is a work of art and the aroma of fresh baked goods in the process is special in itself. Like the anticipation on donut day, the anticipation is the most exciting part of the process.

So concentrate on what you have and not what you do not. Be carefree and enjoy what is. Start your days with a purpose. Enjoy the anticipation of things. Do this, and I will bet dollars to donuts you will be a happier human being.

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