Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

The Impossible Dream

Originally posted on September 25, 2017

I was singing this song to myself, from the Broadway play of the 1960s, Man of La Mancha—, revealing my private dreams of grandiosity. These betray the mind’s capacity to think in terms of superlatives. Each is paradoxical, a way of dramatizing ambition, such as dreaming an impossible dream or fighting an unbeatable foe.

They are indeed impossible—but that’s part of the irony—some few idealists want to fulfil the total ideal, an asymptotic goal—like the speed of light. Or as Paul Simon sang in a 1977 song, “The closer you get to your destination, the more you keep slip-sliding away.”

Anyway, the song reminded me of Don Quixote and how in my early teens I pronounced his name Don Kwix-ote instead of Don Key-hoe-tee, as I later learned that it should be pronounced. These kinds of experiences are highlighted by a sense of shame.

Anyway, I like that song and sing it in the shower, and I just realized that this Dream the Impossible Dream song betrays an ambition to be the best—an abstraction— rather than who I am—a mixture —often not the best in all ways— indeed, nowhere near the best in any of them!—and mixed also with weaknesses—but truly unique in the combination!

It occurred to me that there never has been such a combination of scores of virtues and weakness-es and hundreds of things about which I’ve been mediocre. But God has never been this unique combination before (and likely will never again!). There are so many variables, and individuality is a form of special-ness. So I don’t have to be so heroic! Whew!

One Response to “The Impossible Dream”

  • felicia white-meyers says:

    I hope that heroism continues to be subjective. Defined not by the hero but by those who admire or idealize the hero for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. Your uniqueness, and special combinations that make you who you are made an impression on me. Even though I have continued to live my life since first meeting you at a psychodrama conference over 8 years ago, your uniqueness helped to impress upon me the value of psychodrama and sociometry. I have shared with others things you have shared and educated about. There is nothing more perfect than making a positive connection and passing it on. Nothing more heroic than living a life engaged in courageous living, active efforts in and toward achievements and the difficult mission of developing noble qualities no matter the imperfections. My affirmation of your heroism. I know I am not the only one.


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