Monday, August 12, 2013

Perfection Is a Piece of Mail

Isn’t a piece of mail a wonder?  I sit at my kitchen table and look out the window and see the tiny country post office across the field.  In the morning and later this evening, a truck will pull up dropping off or picking up the day’s collection of mail to deliver to parts unknown to me.

How many hands that letter or bill will pass through before arriving at its intended destination, I cannot say.  But that it all works so well, that it almost always gets where it’s meant to, is a wonder.

Every system that must work perfectly in order to work at all is a wonder.  Much of life doesn’t work that way.  I can open a bag neatly or tear it and still get to its contents.  I can usually be a few minutes early or late to an appointment and be none the worse for it.  I can miss a few pushes on the swing and momentum will still carry you for a time.  Nine times out of ten, even if I miss my target chopping wood, I will not chop my foot off.  Life carries lots of margins for our errors.

But everyone must work in perfect concert for this piece of mail to get to its destination.

The wonder is that it does not fail more often.  Perfection is not, or so we believe, what we humans do best.  And yet here we are, receiving our daily mail with nary a thought how truly amazing that is.

Maybe we’re better at perfection than we thought.

No comments:

Post a Comment