Is it possible to catch lightning in a bottle?
Well, if you can get past my sports analogy and keep reading, you’ll figure out many think they can, figuratively speaking.
Sports teams look to catch lightning in a bottle every year through their drafts, trades, free agency and other attempts to find that one player, or players, that can lift their team to the pinnacle of team sports … a championship.
But, if you follow sports, you also realize catching lightning in a bottle through that one player or couple of players is seldom a realization.
As some sports teams come to realize, the outcome of attempting to catch the “lightning,” has its costs, whether through under performance, dissension in the locker room, gambling on possible past character issues and a litany of other things.
Historically speaking, Benjamin Franklin reportedly caught lightning in a bottle in 1752 using a kite, wet hemp string, Leyden jar, silk string and a key, but even his account of catching lightning in a bottle has been scientifically questioned for many years.
But, I digress.
In my totally politically incorrect way, I have to say there are so many in society today still out there trying to accomplish the rarest of feats … catching lightning in a bottle, both literally and figuratively, through social media, dating sites and random messages to people they don’t even know.
While standing up for my views, I have been called old (which, I am not a spring chicken, but I’ve been around long enough to see people for who they are … even for who they don’t know they are), have a dirty mind and just way out of main-stream thinking.
Maybe it’s warranted, but maybe the ones dishing out the insults haven’t done their research when it comes to psychologists that tend to agree, to one extent or the other.
Just take a look at social media.
You’ve seen it … the bevy of selfies, cleavage ridden female profiles, shirtless muscle-pronounced males, face-only profile photos and every other kind of photo you can think of … all for what? To be trendy? No, not just because it’s trendy.
So, here is your answer — manipulation, attention, compliments, image creation and a bevy of other self-centered causes.
Am I saying all of those things are bad? Not at all. It all depends on individual reasons.
Face it, not everyone on social media is a rock star or celebrity that demands a certain type of image, yet many use social media to shape their image into someone they truly aren’t.
I’m sure many of you can go to a social media site containing personal profiles and see that guy with the six-pack abs, but somehow never see a face, or the person that never smiles, or the girl showing only face and cleavage, just cleavage or screen captures of anything not them.
Honestly, about 90 percent of the public photos of me, except from my newspaper days, don’t show my face. So, in a way I fall into one of the categories I just mentioned.
My reason? My face is not as important as the message I want people to gain from my interaction with them. I am more than a physical appearance. I do have a face, though, there are even photos of me in my writings, if one believes my size and weight have anything to do with who I am.
Again, I don’t hide from it.
Without becoming too politically incorrect, how many people do you know that, although their face looks just like them, what lurks beneath or around the photo is not something they are proud of?
Because you are a large or a particularly skinny person (from a factual standpoint), it should not have an effect on what people think of you … but, it does reflect upon two things if you aren’t as forthcoming about aesthetics — how you feel about yourself, deception or both.
Now, there are a lot of you out there that would say, “it’s only a photo,” and I both agree and disagree.
On one hand, it is more than “just a photo,” it is a little disingenuous to represent yourself to look or be one thing because of the way you pose or the lighting in the photo (retired photographer here, so I know about lighting and angles), but trust me, those who look at your photo should appreciate you for you, regardless of the cleavage or six-pack abs.
Now, if you consider yourself (different from being factual), or are, a large person, skinny person, lack teeth or perceive yourself to be less than attractive (see, I try to be politically correct), then why hide from it?
Maybe the one looking doesn’t see the person you see. Maybe they see the person inside … I know, but it’s not a pipe dream, there are actually good people in the world who will see you for who you are.
Now, attention seekers — I’ll just say this about cleavage, abs and so forth … if all you want is for someone to “like” or comment on how beautiful you are, how sexy you are and for some reason 3,569 friends’ likes and comments are just somehow not enough for you — you really have a problem with self image and what, and how, you feel about yourself, so, get professional help, because you are traveling a dangerous road attempting to “catch lightning in a bottle,” from someone you’ve never met or never intend on meeting — just to feel good about yourself. Worse yet, your ego could suffer severe damage from someone not afraid to espouse their opinion about your deception … digging the self-worth hole a little deeper.
All you can look forward to is perhaps a bunch of sparks, and when the battery runs dry, you’ll be left alone holding a dead battery, one heartache after another and another blow to your own insecurity.
And before you say or think, “I don’t care what others think,” I say hogwash — I’m so tired of hearing people say that. Everyone cares about what at least one person thinks, and probably what many think. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t post not one photo of themselves on social media looking for likes and comments.
So, it’s only a photo, right? Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t, but it is a photo that you will use to shape the way people think about you.
Think about it … you probably say something to yourself about what you think of others profile photos. If you say you haven’t, I’ll just call it for what it is, a lie … it’s human nature to comment on what you see.
If you’re out there trying to catch that one guy or girl who may be “lightening in a bottle,” with photos portray you in a light you don’t want it to portray, be careful, they may be doing the same thing. And, I’ve always been an advocate of, “be careful what you ask for, you may just get it.”
With that said, lightening is impossible catch, but even more impossible to harness or hold for any period of time.
Seek your lightening inside … find a way to shine though the glow that is the real you.