KFC has a new sandwich. For those of you who don't keep up with the latest as it relates to food that will eventually kill you, The Double Down has a day's worth of sodium and an afternoon on the toilet's worth of regret. But I don't care. Come Friday, I'm devouring all 540 calories (no way that's true) of fried chicken, bacon, and cheese.
Quite simply, I'm doing it for the story. That's why I do most things. That's why I drove a friend's moving truck to Austin, why I helped sponsor a Joss Whedon-related event (never seen anything he's done), and why I filled out the form for us to be a Nielsen family. Stories shape us. They stay with us. And if you don't have good ones you tell, then you may want to make better decisions so you have better stories.
Getting caught up in numbers is a very uncreative way to live. There are reasons to track data and add things up, but numbers have no feelings or emotion. Very rarely will they tug at a heartstring or have someone rolling on the floor laughing. They sit there, on the page, looking like a 4 or a 7 or a 9 and offer you very little other than a concrete, immoveable truth. No interpretation. No back story. No romance. No hope.
And if you're recalling times when numbers offered those things - think carefully before you comment. Was it the figures that sat there in the spreadsheet, or was it your mind racing to say what you'd spend the recent bank error in your favor on? Was it the decimal point or the notion that you'd improved your marketing and sales efforts? It wasn't the data. It was the conclusion. It was the story that emerged from your work.
You can share your numbers with me all you want, but it won't excite me like a story will. I need something deeper than numbers. I need a story.
So instead of "I ate 540 calories," we may be saying, "Remember that time the ambulance came to KFC, Marie?"