Conversations For Transformation: Essays Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

Conversations For Transformation

Essays By Laurence Platt

Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

And More


Lucky Se Voet

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

December 12, 2016



"The harder I practice, the luckier I get." ... Gary Player, South African golf living legend

"Lucky se voet." ... Laurence Platt letting slip a classic Afrikaans idiom (pronounced "Lucky suh foot", translating to "Lucky's foot" ie "The heck with lucky").
This essay, Lucky Se Voet, is the companion piece to Who Are You As Family? Or: Is Your Word Your Bond?.

I am indebted to Richmal Morris "Ricki" Wolman who inspired this conversation.




Click to expand
Laurence Platt with Family
L to R: Christian Platt, David Platt, Laurence Platt, Joshua Platt, Rachael Hobernicht, Alexandra Platt
Auberge du Soleil, Rutherford, California, USA
2:59:43pm Saturday December 24, 2016
Her conversation wasn't unique. She spoke about things I had heard before. While they were personal and private for her, sitting in front of me echoing those same sentiments, may have been any number of different people. I'm not talking about a few hundred. I'm talking about millions. What she expressed was disappointment with family, the crux of which is an age old conundrum: the way it is with family may not mesh with the way we know it's s'posed to be. In other words, what we all know is possible for family, is maybe different than the way it is.

Something is associated with family, particularly with the biology of family, that's special. The fact we're bound by blood, the fact we're parents and child, brother and sister, won't change or go away. Ever. Crushes come. And crushes go. But new siblings alter the universe forever. Therein lie great expectations. And great expectations may come with great disappointments.

I suggested to her "You don't do a lot creating ie generating  yourself as family, do you? You were just born into it, yes? Yet if you look and see, all the very good  stuff in life is the result mostly from an act of creating  ie from a generating act.". Somehow, we all fall afoul of a big misconception: that because family is essentially a biological  bond, that we're excused ie that we're let off the hook  of having (ie we don't need) to create it ie we do not have to generate it. Look: why generate family if it already exists? Indeed why. But that is precisely the point!

Then she told me I was lucky to have the kind of family I have. She seemed to not get what I had said. And what slipped out of my mouth was "Oh, lucky se voet.". That's an Afrikaans  idiom. I've not spoken Afrikaans in decades though I did grow up in South Africa fluent in it.

There's an English idiom "My foot.". It's deployed to express contradiction - as in "Lucky my foot.". It's kind of like the American expression "Not" - as in "Lucky not.". That's the Afrikaans "Lucky se voet"  (pronounced "Lucky suh foot", translating to "Lucky's foot" ie "The heck with lucky"). When she called me lucky to have the kind of family I have, my "Lucky se voet"  retort was a playful correction without being unkind. My authority on luck, South African golf living legend Gary Player, famously said "The harder I practice, the luckier I get.". I like that. I like it a lot. Gary got where he got, not because of luck, but because he stays in the game and he practices.

My children and I stay in the game. We're in communication. We visit often. We make a point of conversing - face to face, by telephone, text, via Skype and by e-mail, sharing with and confiding in each other, and above all enjoying, celebrating, and supporting each other. Oh, and  we complete things when they come up to complete (it's not if things come up but when)  before they have a chance to become ingrained in the wallpaper. That's our practice. "I'll bet you good money that's what makes us the family we are: the harder we practice being family, the luckier we get" I told her. We all (ie all of us on God's green Earth) have the ability. The question is: who deploys it? We do ie we choose to. Ascribe the vibrant healthy family we're being, to practice, if you will. Ascribe it to anything. Just don't call us lucky. Lucky se voet.



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