Thursday, January 28, 2010

Writer's Workshop: Wishing you good skill

In honor of Mamma Kat's Writer's Workshop I have decided to tackle Prompt #4:
Luck, or divine intervention?

Rather than take the existential approach and argue if there is or is not divine intervention— I thought I would concentrate on what constitutes Luck and if wishing someone "Good Luck" is the appropriate thing to say.

How often do we find ourselves wishing someone good luck. I have to wonder if this is just a pat statement like "How are you"— that we say just to be nice. Granted, the sentiment is probably very well appreciated— but you have to wonder if you are saying it for those things that truly use luck.

Some things like taking a test may not require luck at all— but rather skill. When you take a test, you need to have some kind of test taking skill in order to pass the test. You need to have some knowledge of the subject being tested on, as well as knowing how to interpret the questions so that you can answer most appropriately. Wishing someone luck in this case indicates that somehow skill is no longer used, and the results of taking the test are no longer under our control. I guess you can call me a humanist in this case since I think we control our destiny in certain situations and need to be properly "whished".

We are giving sentiment by wishing them the ability to perform the task at hand. We are not wishing that they have no control over the situation. Therefore, I think the more appropriate sentiment in these situations should be "Good Skill".

I will leave you with these thoughts:

I wish you luck…
so that opportunities present themselves to you.

And I wish you skill…
so that you can recognize those opportunities
and make the most of them.


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