Monday, January 31, 2011

When life hands you lemons, demand whiskey and make it a double

You take a wrong turn, literally, and it’s a chance to navigate the city with only your wits (assuming you are sans GPS). You thought you were buying bananas, but no, you get home and realize they’re plantains. It’s a chance to experience a new...fruit, or something. You get a flat tire and have never changed one before. It’s a chance to test your knowledge and strength! You see a movie and it is absolutely wretched. That’s ok, because you got to spend quality time with your significant other, friend, mom, insert movie companion here.

Not everything goes according to plan. We make mistakes. We misjudge. Bad things happen. Call it bad luck, divine intervention, or what the hell is a plantain? Either way, these moments are inevitable and we have to deal with them.

At one point or another we’ve all been told: “When life hands you lemons...”

Usually the person saying it doesn’t have lemons of their own and they wear a big cheeky grin on their face. But despite their condescending tone and get-over-it attitude, the sentiment is still there: When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. Look for silver linings. The bright side. Turn your frown upside down and make the negative into a positive.

We’re supposed to be making lemonade, but really, how many people over the age of seven actually drink lemonade? You can take your sorry analogy back, sir.

There is a healthy part in all of us to find the good in the wake of the not-so-good. We try to focus on the positive because it’s supposed to be better than wallowing in sadness. But what about the unhealthy part of it? How can constantly telling ourselves “look on the bright side” and “it could be worse” be the only answer, all the time?

Sadness, anger, frustration - they all exist for a reason.

Sometimes you take a wrong turn and you need to regret not buying the discount GPS on Black Friday. Sometimes you buy plantains and you need to be annoyed that you actually have to cook the things in order to eat them. Sometimes you get a flat tire, and you need to curse and moan. Sometimes a movie just sucks, and you don’t have to pretend to be happy about it.

We are subject to a spectrum of emotions. They are all in us, all the time. It’s natural to feel mad. Sad. Disappointed. It’s also natural to experience happiness, gratitude, and joy. It’s not natural to embrace some and ignore others, no matter which way you flip your flapjack.

Sometimes, when life hands you lemons, demand whiskey and make it a double.

Have your bad day. Have a good cry about it. Pour another drink. It's not healthy to bottle up the more unpleasant emotions for an illusion of happy.

Still a sorry analogy? When life hands you lemons, throw them back and demand chocolate.

When life hands you lemons, squirt the juice in life's eye.

When life hands you lemons, wonder where all these lemons come from. Then sell them on ebay.

When life hands you melons, you know you're dyslexic.


  1. well, this fortysomething rather enjoys lemonade....but i laughed at the thought of discovering plaintains hiding out in the bananas. great writing, and i -- for one -- do believe one can make something stellar, even with plaintains (i think). look forward to hearing more about this latest of culinary (and life) adventures.

  2. Patrick, I bet you could make shoelaces taste good, let alone plantains. I imagine both would involve brie, and be delicious.

  3. Melons??!! You are funny.

  4. Love it! Good writing! Love you, Sharon