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Paying Attention

I shattered the sidelight next to my front door yesterday with the weed whacker. Well, not with the weed whacker as such, but with the river rock launching out sideways from under its throttling spool. I was, of course, obvlivious to this fact due to the noise and chaos usually commonplace to this activity. However, my wife screaming my name at the top of her lungs broke through the noise (and my ear protection) just enough to wake me from my yardwork trance.

About five minutes earlier, my focus was on a small mound of dirt & rocks in the back yard that was sprouting some grass and weeds. I heard a loud bang that startled me and when I look to my right, I noticed one of the rocks from the mound had shot out to the side and hit the neighbors fence quite hard. I fleetingly noted to myself that I was lucky it was the fence and not my tibia getting hammered by that stone.

As I examined the spidered glass formerly known as my sidelight, it dawned on me that I’d wasted that gift of a near miss from the back yard. I did nothing to change my technique. I wasn’t any more careful. I didn’t even try to avoid the rock bed near my front door. I think paying attention is a hugely underrated habit in every aspect of life. The information is out there. Sometimes it even announces itself loudly. Ignore it at your peril.