I remember the first time I heard the word mulligan. I was volunteering at golf outing for a charity, and a re-do on a bad swing could be purchased for a few bucks. I knew nothing about golf, but I liked the word, and that each mulligan was represented by a helium balloon. Once purchased, the mulligans were tied to the back of the golf cart, where they bobbed around in the wind until set free by a bad swing.
Of course, real life doesn’t work that way. We just have to push through the bad stuff and hopefully learn from our mistakes. But if I could have a mulligan, I’d use it for stuff like this:
Earlier this year, in a moment of complete lapse in judgment, I decided Velveeta cheese was a good idea. The weather had been brutal, polar vortex-y, forcing us to hole up inside. Comfort foods beckoned. The Super Bowl was happening.
Somehow that slippery-sloped into craving drippy, gooey queso dip made with Velveeta. There were rumors, a purported Velveeta shortage afoot. Despite those reports, we found neat stacks of the signature golden rectangle box piled high. (A marketing ploy? Proof that Indianapolans are discerning folks with superior taste in cheese?) I think they were actually BOGO, because somehow we ended up with two blocks, all of the processed cheese a girl could want. Or, never want to see again ever. MULLIGAN!
Bad processed cheese decisions? Fine. But I don’t really believe in mulligans for the big stuff. A do-over would erase knowledge gained from past mistakes. Sounds like a sure-fire way to get trapped in an infinite Mulligan loop. Life is full of forks in the roads, unexpected detours, hard choices. You set a course. You live. You react. You learn.
This post is part of Think Kit by SmallBox
Prompt: “Mulligan. We’ve put another quarter in the slot – free play! Hit the reset button on a moment this year: what would you do over? Whether or not you analyze your actions – how would you act differently? Would the outcomes shift, or stay the same? From a single sentence to a whole day (and everything in-between), feel free to explain your choice, from how you felt immediately after the moment passed, to any thoughts that ran through your mind beforehand. Take a mulligan!”