I had written this down on a scrap of paper:
“I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space were it not that I have bad dreams.”
I had no idea as to where it was from, but guessed that the water drop marks on the paper might have indicated that I had written this down while sitting in a hot bath, reading and listening to music, which I try to do a couple of times a week.
Maybe it was from a Pearl Jam or Counting Crows or Led Zeppelin song or something like that, since they write good lyrics. So I went online and looked up song lyrics and part of the quote and found that the group Scuba has a rock and roll song called, King of Infinite Space (and you can hear a 30 second preview). I also found that Dream Machine used that lyric in Lilac Time, but they are not on my music list.
So, I did a general search and found a really surprising source:
Act 2, Scene 2 of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet
Why then, your ambition makes it one. ‘Tis too narrow for your mind.
O God, I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams.
Which dreams indeed are ambition, for the very substance of the ambitious is merely the shadow of a dream.
A dream itself is but a shadow.
Truly, and I hold ambition of so airy and light a quality that it is but a shadow’s shadow.
And THAT reminded me of The Shadow by T.S. Eliot:
“Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow”
That was always a good quote to use when talking about the implementation of ideas and the concept of Murphy and his various laws and corollaries.
You can find my blog on the origin of these Laws and thoughts on their relationships to organizational performance at this blog post of mine and at this post on reframing situational performance improvement.
Yeah, this post rambled a bit.
But I am guessing that it must be bad dreams or shadows or something, ya think?
Hope that all goes well for you,
For the FUN of It!
Dr. Scott Simmerman is a designer of team building games and organization improvement tools. Managing Partner of Performance Management Company since 1984, he is an experienced presenter and consultant.
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