This morning, my ego and I locked horns.
I was getting ready to go for a walk along the beach when I discovered that my headphones (the cool, small, not-very-obvious ones) were dead. Not excited at the prospect of a music-less walk, I turned my house upside-down looking for a replacement pair. Well, the good news is, I found some. The bad news is they were of the ‘look at me I wanna be a professional DJ’ variety. That is, they were freakin’ huge. And goofy-looking. Like, as big as my head, huge. Like the ones I wear when I do radio.
I put them on.
The good news: the sound was amazing. Really amazing. Crystal.
The bad news: I looked like a total dick.
What to do?
Well, I put those bad boys on and walked into the bathroom to get a full-body perspective and to assess exactly how ridiculous I looked. Very, was the assessment.
You know those things that dudes wear over their ears when they’re working in construction and operating industrial machinery? Well, my new headphones looked like a pair of those, except uglier. Clearly, those things were not designed for outdoor use. Or any kind of public display, for that matter. A little more fruitless searching through some spare room cupboards (my ego insisted) was followed by an overwhelming feeling of resignation. “F*ck, it’s these or silence”, was my not-very-comforting conclusion. I made a choice.
Ridiculousness it would be.
Live on the edge, I say. And not only did I need to accommodate the ridiculous headphones but I also had to deal with the enormous cable they were attached to. Without a word of exaggeration, the accompanying cable is twenty feet (six metres) long. So, not only was I about to go public with crazy-town on my head but now I had to find somewhere to hide seventeen feet of superfluous headphone cable as I strolled along the beach.
So off I went. Me, my big-arse headphones, my stupidly-long cable and the remnants of my self-esteem.
From my place to the beach is seven hundred metres. Or twenty curious looks, three smart comments and one bout of uncontrolled sniggering. Yes, I looked stupid but man, did my music sound awesome. So awesome that after a while, I forgot to notice the amused onlookers. So awesome that I totally lost myself in the auditory experience. And so awesome that I couldn’t hear my ego any more.
Does your ego ever stand between you and a great experience?