The Other Side of the Pancake
Real, or just painted on the plate?
It’s morning in the mountains of Panama. We sat on the terrace enjoying the wafting aroma of our local high-mountain Arabica coffee with our friend Bernie. We swilled our brew and chewed over the latest tidbits of local bochinche - gossip. How could so and so do such a dastardly thing? Are they a moron or just deliberately an asshole?
Then, Bernie said something that changed my life:
“Remember, even the thinnest pancake has two sides.”
A few days later, I encountered an apocryphal example: George, a perennially agitated expat, was speeding up the mountain on narrow Volcancito road. A dump truck blocked the road. A helper stood behind, directing traffic. George, being the angry asshole that he was, zoomed around the back of the truck and, in the process, ran over the helper’s foot. Did he stop? Of course not. He was George.
The next day, coming out of the market and getting into his car, George, by his account, was brutally attacked for no reason by a man with an axe handle, who whacked him really good on the back of the neck. For days, George whined to the police and anyone willing to listen that this violent criminal needed to be locked up.
Looking for justice, George took his case to the corrigidora, one of our informal local “judges” who handle personal disputes. She listened to George, then called in the attacker, limping on his bandaged foot, and listened to his story. Then she called George back in and pronounced her judgment - “George, it sounds like you got just what you deserved. Now STFU and get out!” - in Spanish of course.
Like a pancake, every story has two sides—a lesson for LifeOS.
Virtually everything we see in the media is a two-dimensional picture. Is that thing on your computer screen a real pancake? Or just a fake, painted onto a plate?
So when someone tries to sell you a pancake, you have to ask, “Please turn it over and show me the other side.”
The answers might be:
“I can’t because it’s a fake pancake”
“Why do you want to see the other side? Don’t you trust me?”
Insert your own excuse here…
I would suggest this is a great way to detect fake news. Always insist on seeing the other side of the pancake before you buy the story. And don’t try to sell other people one-sided pancakes.
Now, back to the important news of the day…