The first time I watched Forrest Gump, I didn’t make it all the way through. I was on a date with a girl, and I could tell she was getting a little uncomfortable. I asked her if she wanted to leave, and she said she did. So we walked out and continued our date elsewhere.
It wasn’t until much later that I actually finished the entire movie and I saw why people liked it. My son found the movie a couple of years ago, and he watched it on repeat for a while. It was baffling, because he almost never watches TV. If you don’t have a kid this age, you should know that YouTube is their TV. The reason why he liked Forrest Gump so much, was because Forrest was in Vietnam, and he was considering going into the military.
Because I watched Forrest Gump with him a lot, (since I’m always watching TV), I started to notice a theme that I hadn’t really paid attention to the first 40 times. It was really a movie about Forrest and Jenny, and how they dealt with danger or frustrations in their lives.
The theme for Forrest was easy, because it came from one of the many quotable lines from the movie. “Run, Forrest, Run!” and Forrest takes that to heart. Throughout the movie, Jenny tells him to run whenever he is in danger.
Jenny’s theme happens early in the movie too. When she and Forrest are trying to hide from her abusive father, she runs into the field and recites a little poem about being a bird and flying away. Throughout the movie, when she gets in danger, she flies away, either by being flighty and leaving or taking “pharmaceuticals” that help her to feel like flying.
Forrest’s running leads him to comical, historical success throughout the movie when he runs from danger. On the other hand, Jenny’s flying leads her ironically, crashing down into deep depressing rabbit holes. Forrest and Jenny always seem to find each other, for only brief moments, despite their different methods of travel.
Somehow, throughout the movie, I suspended my belief that Forrest could constantly become accidentally famous. But the thing that I could not buy, was the most famous line in the movie. “Life is box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get.”
That is where the wheels (or the leg braces) fell off for me. When people start comparing life to anything, I’m out.
Life isn’t like a box of chocolates. We MAY not know what we are going to get. But on the other hand, we might also know EXACTLY what we are going to get. I’ve eaten a box of See’s Candy Chocolates. They have a guide right on the box. And I’ve had them enough to know that when they have the sprinkles on the outside, it’s the Milk Bordeaux. I know exactly how it tastes, because I’ve tasted it over and over again. As wise as your momma is Forrest, life isn’t like a box of chocolates. It’s much more complicated than that.
When I was young and dumb (3 years old), I thought inspirational quotes would lead to a bitter life. But then I grew up and realized that inspirational quotes don’t miraculously change lives. Inspirational quotes are just the sprinkles on the outside of Milk Bordeau’s. Completely unnecessary and don’t add any value.
Everyone loves Mark Twain, Steve Jobs, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Benjamin Franklin quotes for some reason. People think Jobs and Franklin got famous from doing the one thing they said in the quote. Life coaches, inspirational speakers, and Masterclasses offer the 17 step programs that will lead to health, wealth and amazing relationships beyond your dreams. They do lead to wealth and success…for them.
The problem is they offer the advice from exactly one perspective. Those things worked amazingly…for them and only them.
How often have you heard this advice? Work hard, go to college and you will have a great job. Guess who invented that hooey? College marketing departments. I did work hard, I did go to college (three of them) and here I am, still working hard, not even at my first million yet. But guess who did? The colleges. I’m still not Elon Musk, Bill Gates, or even Optimus Prime. The reason why? I forgot step 14 out of the 17-step program. And now it’s too late for a refund or to option to go back to step 14.
Advice and inspirational quotes is for the birds (because birds are too busy chirping to listen).
The only possible reason you should ever offer advice, is if you do a lifelong study of a person, perform a lobotomy, look into their brains and locate every decision, fear, hope, dream. Then create custom, tailored advice specifically for them. If you don’t put at least that much work, don’t offer advice.
I’m not Forrest Gump, so I don’t believe my mom when she says life is like a box of chocolates. I’m not Forrest Gump, so I’m not going to run. Walking is better for my knees. I’m not Jenny, so I’m not going to fly, because it’s too expensive and I don’t love travel. I may go skydiving though. That sounds fun.
I’m Bitter Ben, dang it. I’m done accepting advice, because none of it hasn’t worked. When something doesn’t work, you either throw it in the garbage, or you try to fix it. I haven’t found a way to fix everyone, so I’m throwing your advice in the garbage. I’ll come up with my own advice, based on myself and my own bitter ideas. And you should too (or not. Don’t believe my advice.)
Bitter Life Is Not Like a Box of Chocolates Ben
5 thoughts on “Life Isn’t About a Box Of Chocolates Bitterness”
Husband and I saw FG in the theater when it first came out. We’re the ones who stay in our seats until the very last name in the credits has rolled off the screen. When the lights came on and the movie theater clean-up crew came in, I turned to my guy and said “This movie is going to win the Academy Award”. That’s exactly how it happened, word of God.
You must have some sort of ability to predict the future. Or the ability to see that Tom Hanks was in the movie and he did a great job. Or that floating feathers predict that a movie will win an Academy Award.
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All the above.
The problem is there’s too much advice floating out there on the interwebs. Sick plants? You’re overwatering. No, you’re underwatering. No they need more/less sunlight, fertilizer, insects, warmth, people talking to them. Whose advice works best? What if one would have worked if you had never bothered listening to the other advice? Now the plants are dead. Thanks, internet advisors. 😐
Since there is way too much advice, it is best to eliminate advice of other people, because they just don’t know enough about you. They can try to generalize, but advice almost never works, and if it does, it always accidental.
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