26
Oct
11

fortune (allegory and reality)

why is the phrase, “oh, he’s so lucky,” more about envy than about the joy luck should evoke?  and doesn’t having luck (such as it is) really indicate that you were adept at ________, or smart enough to ___________, or worked hard to achieve _______ and ______?  the real slap in the face, “oh, she lucked out to have caught that man,” really confirms my suspicion that luck had nothing to do with it.  is luck just the word we use when we don’t understand why we don’t have what other people do?

one of my favorite italian renaissance paintings that i first saw at the getty villa in malibu back when it was the repository for the entire crazy collection of j. paul (that description of the collection does not mean i am in any way jealous, for those who know me know i love it), was hanging in a room lined in red silk brocade and stuck over in a corner, it depicted lady luck sitting on a bubble, as pleased with herself as could be; allegorically, the bubble (which was beautifully painted by dosso dossi, a luscious rich iridescent sphere–little known piece of luck about the painting:  it was found at a flea market in upstate new york, purchased and roped, unwrapped, to the roof of a car and driven into the city to christie’s auction house where it was identified as a long lost work by the renaissance master–now that’s luck), represented fortune and its delicate nature, ready to pop! without notice.  you just never know when your luck is going to run out, do you?

how can your luck run out if it’s never run in?  it’s hardly an hourglass — you don’t think “i better enjoy this piece of luck while i still can, because, as anyone can see, its sands are quickly slipping through my fingers, oh inconstant lover,” or some such nonsense, do you?  it’s quite possible that until someone points it out to you that you didn’t consider whatever good fortune had befallen you had anything to do with luck, did you?  i don’t know about you, but when luck lands in my lap, i think i deserve what it has brought me, because i was adept enough to have ______ or smart enough to have realized that ______ would result in ______ and that my hard work had resulted in my being set up for _______.

is that why you are jealous?  you shouldn’t be, you know, you can go make your own.  just remember to accept your good fortune for what it is.

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© Robert Patrick, and Cultivar, 2008-2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts, photographs and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Robert Patrick and Cultivar with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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