Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Where I come from, the highest compliment you can pay someone is to say they are down to earth...

I understand why being "down to earth" is a valued trait but I don't understand why it is valued so highly. Being down-to-earth is to be average, slightly uncreative, and largely unadventurous. Why is this not a trait to be accepted pleasantly rather than wished for actively? After all, those who improve our future condition are the opposite of down-to-earth. They have ideas that are derided as fantastical but rather than bring their ideas down to us, they bring us up to their ideas.

Not being down-to-earth is meeting the woman in the red silk dress or the man in the pressed white suit. It is jumping off that cliff and swimming through those curious fish. It is what you have always dreamed of but never risked wishing for.

Those who are the most fun or the most inspiring or the most adventuresome, those we admire as children but sometime learn to forget because ... well, because ... are the ones who left the common world because of all the things we, the down-to-earth, complain about but accept as fact. Accept the world as opinion, and it becomes a much more wondrous place.

So pay me a compliment. Tell me I am not down to earth.

(concluding sentence modified from - and post inspired by - two lines in the superb movie, "The Tourist" (2010))


  1. You are down to earth!!! And that's a compliment. I know where you come from. You come from the land of Madoff and Wilpon. A land of where people are pretentious and have affectations. Being called down to earth in those areas means you're just the opposite. And to me the opposite is quite a compliment. So accept it!!!!

  2. Dear stranger, you are the least down to earth person i know :)