Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Chaos Theory

Murphy’s Law states that if something can go wrong, it will (ok, so I paraphrased). Each time I think of this, I picture Dr. Ian Malcom from Jurassic Park and the look on his face as the lawyer is being eaten off of a toilet by a Tyrannosaurus Rex. You see, Dr. Malcom, who was famous for his ‘Chaos Theory,’ was a realist. He knew that nothing good could come of having carnivorous creatures that weigh thousands of tons running around with only a few electrified wires to contain them. Dr. Malcom bravely (or stupidly) returned to the island for a sequel after narrowly escaping with his life the first time. Yet again, Dr. Malcom experiences many, many things that go wrong while on the dinosaur island. My favorite line from the movie, he says just after they've landed, “Yes, ‘ooh, ahh’ that’s the way it always starts. Then there’s the running and the screaming.”

Why do we return to the ‘dinosaur islands’ of life? Is it because we have an all too short memory of the things that happened to us while there? No, I don’t think so. Is it because we all have a need to be ‘right’ and the only true way to prove our theories are indeed correct is to make them happen in our own life? Possibly. I think that a more accurate explanation is that everyone needs some form of chaos in their life.

I know, your mouth is gaping open and you’re thinking “YOU need chaos? I thought you eliminated all forms chaos from your life back in 1993!” You’re right, I did. And it came back. And every time I quash it, it pops up yet again.

What would life be without chaos? Easy. Predictable. Boring. No one wants to live a life such as this. Sure, we all need moments and seasons of easy, predictable, boring; but to live your entire life this way? Uh-uh. Not going to happen. Without chaos, the memorable moments in life would be bland and colorless. Family vacations would be calm and no one would have to pee every 18.5 seconds. The pizza guy would never be late, so you’d never get free pizza. You’d never get to make fun of your friends for something stupid they did. The electric bill would never get lost in the mail and your computer would never get a virus that somehow deleted all of your emails from your boss, and you’d never be late to a meeting because of traffic. And you’d never have that sinking feeling of the three-finger salute (Ctrl+Alt+Delte) when your computer completely crashes in the middle of your presentation, which of course, wasn’t saved.

However, you’d also never get to comfort a child who just tripped over something nonexistent and skinned their knee. You’d never see a rainbow. You’d never get to comfort a friend while they cried on your shoulder, and you’d never see the sunset after a late afternoon thunderstorm.

Chaos is a fact of life, just like growing old or getting a zit. So we might as well embrace it. Some people actually go in search of it, like the weirdos who went back to the dinosaur island after tens of people were killed there. I’m content not to go looking for those dinosaur islands, but when I come upon them I must constantly remind myself that without them, life would be pretty dull. Pin It


  1. very insightful! I believe I agree with your theory! :) I really liked this one.

  2. Thanks. It's nice to be validated!

  3. I have the perfect analogy for CHAOS THEORY...the mother of 7! plus the children-in-laws.