Friday, July 8, 2011

The Enemy of Good is Better

A friend of mine has written a book of poetry titles: "The Enemy of Good is Better."

I haven't bought it yet, although I have meant to for many months.

As I have been planning the upcoming vacation and completing projects at work, I have come to see how sage this statement really is, in terms of wasted effort.

Good is, by definition good--meaning passing and acceptable.

But I have this desire not to be just good, but excellent. Better than good and so I spend extra time exceeding the standard. I took a course a month ago and I wanted to get a 100 on the final exam even though passing was 80 percent. The final grade was recorded as a pass or a fail. No extra benefit for exceeding the minimum. Good should have been good enough--but I desired perfection. And although I attained my perfect but still passing score--really, was it worth the effort?  I still received a "P" for a grade and I received credit for the course.

Think of the wasted time trying to be better than good causes.

Sometimes it is worth it--I definitely want a surgeon who is better than good, or an auto repair person who is better than good.  But, in my life sometime it becomes wasteful to try to be better than good.  And good is no longer "good enough."


I felt it this past weekend working at my parents house putting down quarter-round on their wood floors. My worst corner was only good--but it was also the one that shows the most. My best corner--almost perfection is in a place that no one will ever see.  And I was unhappy with good.

So, I will but the book--as I have been meaning to. I want a hard copy to have and hold.

But the title intrigues me because I know his poetry is not only good, but it is better.

1 comment:

Jeremy Doan said...

This is not at all how you raised us. Good is not ever good enough do your best always.... Because that is who we are (Doans) and what we do.. I love you dad but your brain must already be on vacation touting this just do good enough to get by crap. Lmao now that I think about it you sound like a ravens fan.. Good is ok ( afc title game) ..I'll take better and count Steelers lombardies...please send this attitude to coach harbaugh.

My Zimbio
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