Holding my phone, looking out at Lake Michigan, I understood with sudden clarity that doing the right thing- being right- gets you nothing in this world. It’s the sinners everyone loves: the flailers, the scramblers, the bumblers. There was nothing sexy about getting it right the first time. Jennifer Egan The Candy House
I’ve been thinking about this since I read the book…
Do we idolize sinners?
Do we love to glorify the people who do bad, as opposed to those who do good?
On job interviews, do we ask when was the biggest screw-up, and how did you overcome that?
Do we think that people who never screw up don’t take enough risk, and therefore don’t deserve our time?
I admit, this quote made me STOP when I read the book: I reread the quote at least three times. In a world where I have tried to teach my daughter that she should do the “right” thing, have I been steering her wrong this entire time? While I’ve given her the latitude to make mistakes, and gave her tiny pushes outside her comfort zone…I’ve tried to make sure she followed the path that was lined with good intentions…that she was a “good” person, not quite a “sinner”…
Was I wrong?
Do we really admire those who don’t follow the “rules”?
So what do you think about the quote, about “sinners”, about anything I touched on: