Optimism for most people is pessimism dressed up in fancy clothing. Strip it naked and it is full of negativity.

Indeed, any time you feel the need to try to be optimistic, what you are really saying is that you are feeling anything but optimistic.

That, actually, you are cowering with dread. That you can’t possibly see how things are going to work out for you. But, if only you can convince yourself that everything is going to be alright, then, it will be alright.

I have a friend who always tells me, “It’s on, dude!” That, very simply, tonight is his lucky night. That some fetching young lady will be accompanying him home

And, come the end of the evening, he trundles off home all alone.

And when I see him next, he will explain what happened, telling me, “It was on, dude, but what happened …”

What happened is that you tried to get laid. And you failed. And you felt bad about that. So, to make yourself feel better, you tell yourself, and everyone else, “It was on.”

To somehow make your crushing sense of disappointment – at not getting laid yet again – not quite so crushing.

But if you won’t acknowledge the reality of the situation, crushing disappointment is all that you will experience. No matter how much you try to dress it up.


And you can see a lot of this “trying to positive” guff on the sports field:

“This time we’re gonna win!”

If you’ve lost the last seventeen times, do you really think that this one is going to be any different? Honestly?

You might indeed win, but it will probably only be because the Gods couldn’t bear to hear your bellyaching yet again.


Optimism is the natural order of things. It really isn’t something you need to force or assert. It is simply the recognition that, in the end, everything will work out fine. It always does.

Yes, indeed, it will be alright on the night! There might be plenty of technical hitches along the way but the show, itself, is never in any doubt. We have all assigned it a function and given it a meaning, and it fulfils that function and meaning, no matter what.

Well, in spite of everything that’s ever happened, here we all are, living, breathing, realizing ourselves.

How else would you have it?

© Phillip A. Klein March 2008

Published in: on March 17, 2008 at 1:35 am  Leave a Comment  

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