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“Plans” and Death Cab for Cutie

I am easily distracted, especially in January. It’s such a great month for rest, battery recharging and looking forward. I am deliberately using the phrase ,“looking forward”, than the word “planning” as I have a sense that indiscriminate use of the word “planning” is simply setting myself up for a fail.  Especially in January 2022. 

Reflect on the plans made in 2020 and 2021. How many of the outcomes of those plans would you classify a success?   My plans for a holiday in 2020 were a masterpiece of research, investigation and preparation. But thanks to Covid, there was simply no implementation.  Now there’s something I need to track: what have I done with those flight and holiday credits? Add it to the list.

At work, the discussions and reactions and planning in response to Covid were constant and the monitoring and tweaking is continuing. So much urgency and energy and collaboration, with sometimes little to measure the success from that planning.  Do not get me wrong.  It is a great outcome that some of our detailed plans have not been tested.  We are still here with new and different challenges to meet- how good is that- but there’s a nagging distraction: how do you rate the investment of time and energy in those plans that never got a guernsey?

In 2006 an album named “Plans” by the American indie group Death Cab for Cutie was nominated for a Grammy and was high on the playlist in my family. The lead singer and lyricist Ben Gibbard when discussing the album stated at the time: ”One of my favourite kind of dark jokes is, ”How do you make God laugh? You make a plan.” He went on:  “Nobody ever makes a plan that they’re gonna go out and get hit by car.  A plan almost always has a happy ending.”

My 4 sons were keen to see the band when they toured Australia in 2006.  They were only playing 2 small gigs in Sydney at a nightclub. If we were going to get tickets, we needed a plan, especially as 1 son was living in Bathurst and 2 of my sons were aged under 18 and faced legal hurdles to gain entry.  Surprise, surprise, there were answers to this latter issue in the legislation.   Suffice to say, the concert was great and we had a wonderful time- a happy ending.   Emboldened, we have gone on to plan numerous other gatherings at clubs, pubs and festivals.  We have had our unfair share of cancellations in the last 2 years, but we are still looking forward with optimism, and buying tickets to concerts in 2022.  And if our plans fail, at least we are giving God a good laugh.

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