The world has multiple 'realities' and what seems 'mad' to one person is not necessarily so to another.
Sydney futurist Keith Suter made these observations last weekend at a NSW Minerals Council conference.
But he could well have been mining a rich vein of truth concerning Manly's NRL pride jersey furore this week.
Unveiled as an attempt to promote how inclusive the NRL club is, it instead triggered issues not exclusive to the game of rugby league around culture and religion.
At one point, the fallout threatened to overshadow this weekend's Women in League Round.
Not even the game's one true Creator, Peter V'Landys, knew what to say, so legend Paul Gallen had a crack branding it an ill-timed distraction, declaring: "Every single one of us has been touched by a woman at some stage of our life."
It didn't come out exactly right, but we all knew what Gal was getting at.
There were multiple realities at play and rugby league was struggling to accommodate them, as usual. But if any code knows 'mad' it's rugby league and hats off to Manly for the way they salvaged things.
Apologies issued to everyone offended, which seemed to be everyone.
Players allowed to stand down and contemplate their jersey sponsors.
And a quiet organisational nod to the concept of consultation next time before shooting yourself in the foot and mouth.
The first confirmed case on the mainland thus far, I think.
The big lesson learned is that respect is critical when realities collide because only through sensitive communication do we move forward. Ya idiots!
I learned this the other night having prepared dinner and noting 'muted communication' during consumption, ie, no praise.
In the spirit of open debate, I invited my guest to tell me what they really thought.
The diplomatic reply was "no, it's OK, I don't want to start world war III". But I insisted and duly got what I asked for. A withering critique not unlike a long range Russian artillery strike. Advancing forward remorselessly across flavour, texture, ingredients, method etc. Leaving me in rubble.
What really hurt was the word 'stodge'.
Naturally I took umbrage, as predicted. And not just so I could skulk off to watch the Knights, as alleged. Because who finds solace there these day?
But it did highlight that although we're all living on the same planet sometimes perceptions can be light years apart.
I mean, look up at the sky most nights and all you see is darkness, particularly if someone's just torched your cooking.
But aim the Webb telescope at a grain of sand and suddenly you see galaxies from the dawn of time in detail nearly as complex as that rundown on my stew. Looking not unlike the polenta I served it with actually, only a bit less lumpy.
It really puts the idea of multiple realities into perspective and next time maybe I will add a bit more butter just to smooth things over.
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