One of my least favorites expressions is “That is not possible.” It is stated in many other forms, such as “I can’t do it,” “It’s not allowed,” or the flip expression, “You’ve got to be kidding!”
How many times have I heard people say, “That is not possible” as I’ve traveled around the world! I asked to switch my hotel room because, well, I’m a Master and don’t want a noisy room overlooking the busy street below. The clerk at the reception desk tells me “That is not possible” because the hotel is sold out. But it’s only 2:00 PM and certainly not everyone has checked in yet, I note. The clerk doesn’t like being challenged because this is his territory (and power) behind the gilded front desk. He pretends to look at the rooming list on his computer. After a few moments he turns back to me with a gloating smile and repeats, “That is not possible. We are completely full tonight.” Score: Clerk. Now the ball is back in my court.
I put aside my weary traveler aspect and don my Master persona. I imagine myself in a nice, quiet room. “When would it be possible for a quiet room? I’m going to be here for 7 nights.” Now I have him cornered. He knows I’m not going to go away like most of the guests he’s NO-tarized (NO-tarized: The act of saying NO because it’s usually less work than finding a solution). He knows I’ll be back every day for the next week.
“Let me check in the back.” He exits his pulpit and goes to the back room. This is a common ploy… he needs to make it look like he’s working hard for me, even though everything he needs is at the front desk computer. In a few moments he comes back with a tight smile on his face, like he’s just battled the devil for me and won. “It’s your lucky day sir, we just happen to have a cancellation. I can get you a quieter room after all.”
“THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE” is annoying, indulgent, abusive and well, little. Yes, perhaps that’s the best word to describe how I feel about this offensive phrase. It’s LITTLE, in big capital letters. To me, only LITTLE people use this phrase. (I’m not talking about “vertically-challenged” people. All of my friends are shorter than me so I better not ever condescend to those who keep their heads closer to the ground and their bodies of less elongated proportions.) No, I’m talking about LITTLE people who use “that” phrase like a gunfighter would use bullets. Bang!
The other day I was in the Pub at the Hilton Hotel in Sibiu, Romania. Gerhard and I were going to have a guy-talk before dinner, and revel in the amazing magical event we had just finished. A pretty, buxom young waitress came over to take our order. (I only mention buxom because she was wearing an extremely low-cut outfit and enjoyed leaning forward for the male customers.) I asked for a glass of cabernet wine. “No cabernet,” was her lifeless answer. “OK, how about a merlot?” Every bar carries this staple of red wines. “No. No merlot. No red wine. You drink rose or white wine.” Was that a directive or a choice, I wondered?
Now, my intolerant Master self came forth. But I kept a smile on my face and a pleasing tone in my voice. “Would you be so kind as to check with one of the other two bars in the hotel to see if they can send over a bottle of red wine?” I asked.
“THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE,” she replied. She wasn’t screaming like my words are screaming on the page here, but inside I was screaming. This young lass was going to go through the rest of her life with the “That is not possible” attitude, even long after her youthful chesty attributes sagged away. She would tell her husband “That is not possible” when he talked about his dreams of being a successful entrepreneur. She would tell her children “That is not possible” when they wanted to take a music class or build a tree fort. Somehow, I had to stop this LITTLE behavior right here and now, for the sake of generations to come!
Now we were eye to eye (I was sitting, she was standing but also very short). It was the Master of LITTLE against the Master of Possibilities. “Ah, then I’m sure it would be OK for me open my own bottle of red wine?” I said as I held up a bottle I was planning to bring to dinner at the hotel restaurant. I don’t usually carry around bottles of wine, just in case you were wondering (and you should be). But it was our last night and I didn’t have room in my suitcase for it. On the previous night the restaurant manager let us bring our own wine, for which he received a very generous tip. Yes, a lot of wine flows at Shaumbra gatherings, but I hear that it did at Jesus’ gatherings as well. You can read all about it in the Bible.
“No, that is not possible,” she said. These words were like a thousand coarse fingernails scraping across a dusty chalkboard. (Note to Self: Find out why the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard affects so many people. Is this an Atlantean implant or alien conspiracy??)
“It is possible, my dear lady. I have a wine-screw (the little device to take the cork out of the bottle) with me, and I could easily pour this wine into that water glass. It IS possible. If you would spend less time displaying your bountiful cleavage and more time imagining the possibilities, you wouldn’t end up with two miserable psychotic children and a drunken husband in your future! You’d scrap this demeaning barmaid job, go to the university to study quantum physics, learn how to extract clean, free energy from the abundant gravitational forces around us, and save the world from the imminent disaster of the LITTLE people. It IS possible for me to have a glass of red wine! It will save both of us!!”
The previous paragraph is a lie. I backed down after telling her that is possible – I simply had to pour my own red wine into the water glass – but I didn’t want to get her in trouble with her manager because he was the Big Manager of LITTLE people. I truly regret not telling her what I stated in the above paragraph. Yes, it would have brought her to tears. She would have spent a few years in counseling, but I would have recommended a very good Shaumbra psychologist (as well as SES), and within a short time she would have been heading off to the university to save the world. I regret my desire to play “nice” rather than to play BIG, but Gerhard had ordered tea so I knew I didn’t have a real drinking buddy at the moment. That’s why I backed down.
I propose an immediate end to the use of the phrase “That is not possible” henceforth on this planet! “A dreamer!” you say. “Even a strict law could not stop people from saying, ‘That is Not Possible,’” you caution me.
“Be still and take heed,” I counter. “I merely propose it. The proposal IS possible, so therefore it is done. I propose that humans stop be-littling themselves with the un-magical and suffocating use of that cursed phrase. My lips will never speak this vulgar language again, and my ears will never cause these words to pass into my mind if spoken by others. The only thing I know is possibilities, and anything to the contrary does not exist in my realm.”
It IS possible if you allow it to be.