Sunday, December 02, 2007

Is it what it is?

About a month ago, I read this hilarious article by Heather Havrilesky on Salon. She was joking about people who say "It's all good" and "It is what it is" which lead me on a long journey to discover if there was an axiom for me. I finally settled on "you gotta take the good with the bad" which I do not actually believe, but WANT to believe. I, unfortunately, have an intrinsic sense of fairness, whereby I think that if, for example, I am a good person, good things should happen to me. Despite the fact that this rarely, in my entire life, has proved true, I continue to get upset when "bad" things happen to me. Which is why I'm try to remind myself to "take the good with the bad" because, it turns out, life is really random, and (as I'm sure you know) completely unfair.

I've had a couple of really fun conversations with friends about what their mottos are, and little sayings like this that people say to get through the day/motive themselves. My friend D.'s dad is apparently full of them, and she proceeded to spend the night doing shots of things you shouldn't really do shots of and shouting out You gotta do what you gotta do! and That's life! and, my favorite, what her gran would say when you asked how she was: Oh, what the use complaining?

Let me know what sayings you love (or hate). And, if you really love making lists, head over to Top Five, a cool site created by my bro-in-law. He invited me to be a contributor and we've got big plans for the month of December (and beyond)!

12 comments:

Kathy said...

I've recently expelled "fair" from our household. You'll get right over placing value in the notion of fairness about 4 years after the birth of your first child---for those without kids, I'm not sure how long it takes. Fair is a myth. It is a load of crap handed to us to make us behave. Ha! I refuse! But curse it all, I'm mostly too nice to behave in any way that might not appear fair...

I wish I could cite some clever or trite motto for life, but alas...I guess I am always "a day late and dollar short".

Lyman said...

good to hear that there is someone else frustrated with "it is what it is"

Laura said...

"Everything happens for a reason..." That trite little saying has become more evident in my life as time passes (it also ties into a "Karma" thing). Another saying that I really enjoy, "Don't take life too seriously, no one gets out alive."

Laura said...

Oh and another thing, Kel - I have always thought you were a fair and loving person.

Caitlin said...

I think Marge Simpson sums it up the best for me:

"It doesn't matter how you feel inside, you know. It's what shows up on the surface that counts. Take all your bad feelings and push them down, all the way down, past your knees, until you're almost walking on them. And then you'll fit in, and you'll be invited to parties, and boys will like you... and happiness will follow."

(Thanks for finding that quote for me, D)

Caitlin said...

Or if I must sum that quote up in a little motto package: "fake it 'til you make it!"

kbmulder said...

"the more the merrier"

Carrie said...

I get through the day thinking things like, "We all made it out alive." and "The shit really hit the fan." I hate "It is what it is." All those people need more imagination and "So...." So what?

Indiana Fan said...

"I can't believe I ate the whole thing!"

fo' realz, yo. That's me.

Bianca Reagan said...

"It is what it is" has to be the most cloying phrase du jour. Every time I hear someone say that in my vicinity, I have to restrain myself from rolling my eyes.

caitlin, I love that Marge Simpson quote.

Amber said...

oh man, i think i'm going to have to defend "it is what it is" here. I just heard somebody say it yesterday in the context of talking about how, emotionally, she was able to make it through some really big worries she was having. when ppl were doing crap she didn't like around this one issue, she said she just had to take a deep breath and say to herself - "it is what it is"...just accept it, because we can't control stuff outside ourselves all the time. So, I think it has utility sometimes as a mantra that helps people calm themselves down.

clterry said...

My favorite quote from Scrubs-- "What has two thumbs and doesn't give a crap? [holds up thumbs, pointing in at self] Bob Kelso."
I would like to say this sometimes and one day I will find the perfect opportunity.

My grandma (Phyllis) use to say "pretty ugly." I never really got it, its like saying "same but different." Or someone is really ugly.