Letting go and surrendering to simplicity

Jeff Fox
Headed for trouble

I am about to embrace a major policy change, which should bring a significant improvement to my quality of life. 

It started, as do so many things, with the Scouts down at camp. A couple of summers ago, the trading post started selling frozen pickle pops. 

Jeff Fox

Yes, that’s just what it sounds like. As an alternative to an ice pop with frozen, brightly colored sugar water, they freeze dill pickle juice. Supposedly football players drink the stuff during summer workouts because of electrolytes or whatever. 

It sounded crazy enough to work. We are reminded to be up on what the young people are doing, and although I will pass on the gaga ball pit at camp, I can try a frozen pickle pop. 

It wasn’t bad. Not at all. Ice – good. Sharp, refreshing taste – good enough. And no sugar – always a plus when it’s 95 in the shade. It hit the spot. Sign me up. 

Then the other day I ordered a sandwich, and it came with an unsolicited dill pickle spear. But I’m a good Midwesterner, and I clean my plate, so I bit into it. It was a hot day and, you know what, it hit the spot. 

What revelation is this, I wonder? Should I drop my lifelong and futile crusade to enjoy the standard American cheeseburger without those needless and distracting slices of pickle? (And grilled onions? May I please have grilled onions? They are really easy. But I digress.) 

Anyone who has dealt with the Fast Food Industrial Complex at the drive-thru speaker learns that “No. 22 with a Coke, and hold the pickle please!” has three likely results: 

• Cheeseburger with pickles, as if one were taking to a wall, as if they heard nothing after “22.”  This is the most common outcome. 

• Cheeseburger with no pickles, as requested – second most common outcome and one of life’s small victories. 

• Triple pickle – least common outcome but certainly the most annoying. 

What if I just let go? What if I embraced change because the only constant is change? What if I stopped sweating the small stuff because, OK, this really is small stuff? What if I acknowledged the small kernel of truth in all these mindless cliches that pass for wisdom? 

The other day someone told me I simply had to try – and this is real – a kiwi apple Red Bull, part of that company’s Green suite of swill. Coffee and a doughnut – OK, two coffees and four doughnuts, all at once – would have about the same effect, so I think I’ll stay in the coffee lane. 

Stick with what you know. We can all only handle so many new horizons at one time. 

Jeff Fox is The Examiner’s editor. Reach him at 816-350-6365, jeff.fox@examiner.net or on Twitter at @FoxEJC.