90% of everything is crap, at least it is according to Theodore Sturgeon. Sturgeon was both a science fiction writer and a critic, and he made this observation in the 1950’s. It was meant to describe the low quality of work in the science fiction genre at that time, and eventually was applied more broadly to other areas. Let’s face it: low quality work can be produced anywhere! His observation is now known as Sturgeon’s revelation, or Sturgeon’s law. No disrespect to Sturgeon, but 90% of Sturgeons law is crap! 😊
The fatal flaw in Sturgeon’s revelation is who determines what’s crap and what’s not? It’s entirely possible, even probable, that we will look at the same information and form different opinions of what is good and what is just crap. It’s a matter of perspective, which is personal. The most recent example, I can think of is many of the things we’ve experienced the last two years with the pandemic. It’s a mostly shared experience that many have complained about: being couped up, taking on roles as teachers and entertainers (in addition to their regular jobs), no travel, no social life outside of zoom; this list goes on. We can all relate. But many had positive experiences: deepened family relationships, more time at home, and even discovered new hobbies. I hated not traveling, but it did give me the opportunity to deepen family ties and friendships, catch up on shows, and read some amazing books I wouldn’t have otherwise. Don’t get me wrong, in no way am I saying the pandemic was a good thing—it absolutely was not. What I am saying is how we all individually view that time is just a matter of perspective.
If you know me, you know I hate beer. No disrespect to my friends that drink or brew it, but 90% of it is crap. There are others that would say 90% of whiskey or something else I enjoy is crap, and they would be correct, coming from their own perspective. Even with something that we do not like, we can usually find a few exceptions to the rule. I found the 10% of beer that I do like; there are a few specific beers that I am willing to drink occasionally. I think that is the trick: even with what you don’t like (whether it’s beer, opera, social media, etc.), look for something that you do. Find that 10%, and it will change your perspective on the rest. My perspective has changed on beer. I don’t hate all of it, (I hate most of it!) but I’m willing to at least try.
“Sometimes a change of perspective is all it takes to see the light.” – Dan Brown
This weekend, what 10% of something will you find to like?