We waited for the house to open, offered our tickets to gain admission, and found our seats. We were there to see Blue Man Group. We came to hear good music, to laugh, to revel in the innovative combination of technology and entertainment. We came to see a Blue Man (or three) up close.
As we settled into our seats, I was intrigued by the language projected at the front of the auditorium, so I took a photograph. Soon thereafter, the show started. I heard, I laughed, I reveled and I saw a Blue Man (or three) up close; the experience was everything I had expected it to be, capturing my full attention (which is rare) for the duration of the show.
Later in the day, curiosity--that blessed bane--brought me back to the language and to the attribution--to the "International Diplomacy Guidebook." I searched for it. I found A Diplomat's Handbook for Democracy Development Support (which is, by the way, interesting reading). I found other references to Blue Man Group. But I still haven't found an International Diplomacy Guidebook.
And then I wondered whether the Guidebook--offered as the only context, written or spoken, for the show--is a Blue Man creation. Regardless of the source, it seems about right. If we cultivate our interests (which, oddly enough, are often the things that bring us the greatest joy), share those interests with others, and are receptive to their interests, it often follows naturally that we are able to collaborate more successfully and build something of value. Whether parenting, teaching, friendship, or marriage, we are all endeavoring to build lasting connections. And we start with offering who we are.
Shakespeare wrote a similar version:
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Perhaps what matters about learning and about wisdom is that we are receptive. Words of wisdom can, indeed, be true blue, regardless of from whence they came.