There’s a scene at the end of the movie The Candidate where Robert Redford has just won election to the Senate in a race he never expected. He pulls his consultant (Peter Boyle) aside and asks “What do we do now?”
Redford never expected, nor really wanted, to win the election. He ran with the promise that he could say whatever he thought. The honesty paid off and he won.
Then he didn’t know what to do.
Most of us don’t start projects expecting to fail.
Sure there are some times, like in The Fellowship of the Ring when you know that you’re particular mission may fail, but it’s for the greater good. Surely you know the reference.
As Frodo and Sam are attempting to make it to Mount Doom, Aragorn and Gandalf launch a counter attack to divert the Eye of Sauron.
Certainty of death, “small” chance of success… What are we waiting for?
In the end they were victorious, but they were willing to forge ahead for the cause and to help someone else win.
There’s a sermon in that, but I’m not preaching.
The thing is, like I talked about yesterday, when we embark upon a project we generally know the steps to reach our goal.
But, life happens, and inevitably we reach a decision point where we have to ask “what’s next?”
I’ve got a bundle of projects where I’m asking just that.
I’ve set some goals. I’ve set some deadlines.
One of them is my writing a minimum of 500 words a day. I’ve done consistently for over three weeks now. No, that’s not really very long. But it’s a start. And it’s part of the process to get me to the full-time writing status.
Never mind the details on what the other goals and deadlines are. They deal with what happens to the day job, what happens to the acting, what happens to producing events and shows. Not to mention what happens to the unfinished canvases and art supplies sitting behind me (I need a snow day for that).
I guess what I’m saying is that, for many of those, I’m at the point of asking “What do we do now?”
More importantly, with the realization that I can’t do it all, I’m getting to the point of asking “Which do we do now?”
I never got to play Pippin. We won’t talk about the fact that I never looked like I could have played the part.
But, in two separate shows in college I sang one of Pippin’s songs. The lyrics said:
But I won’t rest until I know I’ve had it all.
Yeah, not happening. I need rest. I’m not going to have it all.
And that’s okay.
But, for the record, if you’re casting Pippin, I could rock the part of the king.
What I have to do is decide what’s next with the projects I’ve got going, with the goals I’ve set, with the dreams I’m dreaming.
So, it’s not only okay, it’s appropriate to ask “What do we do now?”