When you derive energy from the acquisition of knowledge and combinatory play, too much time spent doing the same thing can have an entropic effect. If your objective is to effect transformations, once that has been achieved it is the moment to move on to something different, passing the ball, handing over the jersey.
In his email message accompanying this doodle, Hugh says it took him “twenty years to get from the bottom to the top of the pyramid.” It took me about the same amount of time, a little more or a little less depending on how you count it. Since reaching that point, I’ve had several most excellent adventures. I’ve often wondered though:
How do you know when it is time to start looking for the next adventure?
It’s easy, of course, and incredibly fun when your next adventure finds you. But in the absence of that, how do you know when the current adventure has become just another project? When it is time to actively seek a new adventure?
Or at least let all those potential adventures know that you are ready for them?
It all depends on the context. How you define “safe” and “sorry”, the time scale in which you’re working. What you want to have written across your tombstone, or in the history books, when your time on this earth inevitably ends.
It has stuck with me through the years, and always seems to pop up when it’s needed. Not too long ago (wow – the better part of a year), I tweeted my own variation on this, exploring a bit the “is such crap” part of Jeff’s tweet.
The problem with "better safe than sorry" is that it rarely keeps you safe and almost always leaves you sorry.
It all depends on the context. How you define “safe” and “sorry”, the time scale in which you’re working. What you are willing to give up for what you want to achieve. What you are willing to tolerate. What you want to have written across your tombstone, or in the history books, when your time on this earth inevitably ends.