Name the five wealthiest people in the world.
Name the last five winners of the Miss America contest.
Name the last five people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.
Name the last half dozen Academy Award winner for best actor and actress.
Name the last decade’s worth of World Series winners.
How did you do?
I know I did horrendously. The point is this: We forget yesterday’s headliners. These people are the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Trophies tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and awards are buried with their owners.
Here’s another quiz. See how you do on this one.
List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.
Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.
Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.
Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.
Name half a dozen heroes whose stories have inspired you.
I felt a big difference the moment I got to the first question of part 2. I’m guessing that most people will.
I could define addiction as something you can’t help doing, that seems good at the time, but that you realise soon after has not been good for you. You might get that realisation in hitting a major downer, or you might get in touch with an experience that is really satisfying.
For me, that sense of deeper satisfaction is a bit like what I felt as soon as I got to part 2 of the quiz. It’s a sort of coming home, to things that create a deeper feeling. Stuff that matters.
There’s a longer post brewing in my head about celebrity and my hope that the rise of blogging and the fracturing of big media may mean, to quote Tina Turner (spot the irony), we don’t need another hero.
I’m putting this in my “facilitiation” category. I think groups quite easily get into many variations of “how the world is” and avoid “how I am” and “how we are”… what’s happening to the people in the room, and their experiences of each other. (See previous posts on shadow conversations.)