The king was the wisest ruler in the history of the nation. Kind, fair, open-hearted, direct. His castle gates stood open every day. People from near and far brought their disputes to him, and left as friends. The king had many admirers, yet he never married. At dusk, he ate a simple supper, and retired alone to his chamber, bolting the heavy door behind him.
Imagine, one day long ago you’d entered a room. And there was an old engineer there. Carefully tweaking the movement of several long poles. He’d been a bit grumpy, apparently you were late. Quickly, he instructed you to continue the work, to keep the plates above spinning. “Whatever you do, don’t let a plate drop.” And he left the room.
I don’t mean wild camping or five star hotel. I don’t mean vegan or carnivore. I don’t mean masks or no masks. I don’t mean political party. I don’t even mean football team. And the reason I don’t mean any of them? Because they are all exactly the same. What do I mean? I mean something fundamental, foundational, and very, very functional.
Seven of the most dangerous words in the English language. You just think it’s how a fairy tale ends, right? Just something sweet to help the kids sleep? You couldn’t be more wrong. (Obviously you’re not wrong. I said that for dramatic effect.) When I write, I love to let the story tell itself, and for each reader to find their own message, their own gem. I find my own gems too, when I read the stories back later. So why not the fairy tale? Why not ‘and they all lived happily ever after’? Here’s what Terry Pratchett, the master