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"How unicycles might save the world" by Laura Nelson (CatholicMom.com) Image credit: Pixabay.com (2015), CC0/PD[/caption] Yes, you read that right – unicycles. I propose that unicycles might just save the world. How? Because there is no practical purpose to a unicycle. It’s a horrible mode of transportation (if you stop pedaling, you stop moving – no coasting option) with no storage and definitely no cup holders. Yet, unicycles haven’t gone the way of the dinosaurs. Why? Because they’re fun! Purely fun! And we need more fun in our world! In a world full of work and responsibilities, sometimes you just need to play. And play isn’t play if there’s a purpose to it other than fun. If your “play time” is spent doing something that will lay the groundwork for a promotion at work, it’s not play. It doesn’t matter if you enjoy doing it. If it has a purpose, it’s no longer play. So, unless you’re a clown looking for a way to boost your resume, chances are riding a unicycle isn’t going to further your career. Like most adults, I work hard at both the job that I get paid to do and my vocation as a wife and mother. Very little of my time is spent playing. So, when a colleague recently made a joke about having unicycle races in the parking lot, I couldn’t get unicycles out of my mind. Being the modern woman that I am, I immediately started googling “unicycle” and “how to ride a unicycle.” Despite my obsessive internet searching, I was hesitant. Should I buy a unicycle? Won’t people think I’m crazy? I continued to hem and haw until I chatted with someone who had just returned from a funeral for a friend who was far too young. My friend commented, “You never know how long you have. We’re not guaranteed a certain number of days on this earth.” Almost immediately after she said those words, I blurted out, “I’m going to buy a unicycle!” To her credit, she only missed one beat before she said. “Okay! You do that!” Despite the fact that I have yet to master riding the unicycle at this point, just having it and trying to ride it has given me quite a lot of pointless fun. And fun brings joy. And joy brings us back to my theory ... unicycles might just save the world! For most adults, life is filled with work and responsibilities and very little fun. But we need fun to help us carry the load of our life. The more fun we have, the easier it is to bear our load and to help others bear theirs. But, when we are working all the time we have little to no ability to bear our own load much less help others with theirs. And that is isolating and lonely. And God didn’t create us to be alone. He created us for community and joy. Ok, maybe unicycles can’t exactly save the world. But, I think they can go a long way to bringing a little joy to our lives. So, if unicycles don’t bring you joy, look for the thing that does. If we can all make a little more time for the things that bring us joy, don’t you think the world will be a better place?
Copyright 2019 Laura Nelson