Opinion: Leaping lizards

Perhaps it is because I find myself sitting in loads of meetings. Perhaps it is because my attention span seems as dedicated as that of a 3-year-old’s. Perhaps it is because my undergraduate education in the humanities actually did impress upon me the value of attention to detail and commitment to critical thought. Regardless of the impetus, each meeting, speech, presentation and podcast is an opportunity to garner insight. Not that life-changing, overwhelming and radical insight is to be routinely expected. If we are spending our time with the right folks, there is much to be learned.

Recently I was in the company of a small group of the uninitiated as the CEO of the Carmel Performing Arts Center, Tania Castroverde Moskalenko, told of the history and future of the complex and its many troupes. Brilliantly, she framed the story in the context of her own life and journey from Cuba to Carmel. The information was not new to me, but the delivery was captivating.

One phrase in particular caught and held my attention. American naturalist John Burroughs is attributed as saying “leap and the net will appear.” Moskalenko shared how the quote provides strength and guidance during difficult periods in her life. So even as the perfunctory retelling of the stats for the Palladian style concert hall and other details could no longer hold my attentions, I imagined if I could be a leader, or for that matter a person, who could find faith enough to leap?

The world around us is filled with opportunity for reflection. But most of us move from meeting to meeting, from day to day, from year to year, without out so much as a snag of consideration. Could I leap? I’m not sure, but I am grateful to Moskalenko for leading me to wonder.