Passionately moderate

Soooooo – should everything be done in moderation?

Oh hell no.

First, there’s the idea of “doing everything”, moderately or otherwise. I really don’t plan to spend a moderate amount of time and energy cutting coupons or watching American Idol. I don’t plan to spend any time or energy on them. Nor do I plan to drive myself into a frenzy by carefully considering each of the 245,629 products offered by my supermarket…only the 1,792 products I might realistically consider buying.

And then there’s “moderation”. Live your life with the brakes on, says moderation. Always hold something back. Don’t get too involved. Stay ironic.

Bah. If you’re going to do something, throw yourself into it. While you’re working on your job, or on building the Eiffel Tower out of toothpicks, or praying, or cooking, or partying, do it with all the focus and intensity and enthusiasm you have. Then, when it’s time to put the toothpicks down and go to work, do that with enthusiastic intensity too. “Keep one point”, as we say in aikido. Even if it’s something you don’t want to do at all, you may as well concentrate on cleaning that oven and get it over with as efficiently as possible. Yes, you’ll make mistakes. Yes, you’ll have to juggle conflicting interests. But at least you won’t be moderate.

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