When Pigs Fly

A Story of Injustice, the Power of Words, and Pork.

Pigs can fly, plain and simple.

As we grow up most of our parents encourage us, chanting such phrases as “You can be whatever you want to” or “The sky is the limit.” Why, then, should we abuse that gift by telling others that “the sky is off limits”? What qualifies us to claim that pigs can’t fly?

In our disconnected society we tend to forget the true impact of our words and thoughts on others. The truth is, when we use phrases such as “When pigs fly” we force people to close off countless windows of opportunity, putting them in a darkened pit where dreams go to die. When we utter the phrase “You can’t do it” we aim to put our fellow human beings down; and all because we cannot handle the fact that, yes, a pig could possibly fly.

Countless directors have told me I’m not good looking enough or old enough or talented enough for a part. Schools tell me that over 1000 kids vie for 12 spots in their programs. That’s, at best, an acceptance rate of 1.2%; and actors would love to have a 1 in 100 chance at an actual audition. People who barely know me serenade me with speeches about how hard it is to be an actor.

My teachers and friends all tell me that to become the valedictorian is extremely difficult, if nearly impossible. That a 2400 on the SATs in unattainable. That with everything on your plate already, another production or reading another torah portion at temple is too much to handle. That writing, producing, directing, and performing in a musical is an insurmountable task for a seventeen-year old. That you can only do so much or reach so far; that there is a limit on the sky.

But that doesn’t mean you let it get to you; that just means you fight even harder. You take more acting classes, get tutored, pull all-nighters, get a gym membership; you do anything but quit.

We live in a crazy, messed up world where innocent people die and bad guys win, but with dreams we have the solely human capability to create a better world; to make change. Anything, and I mean anything, is possible, if you want it badly enough. If we have dreams, they are attainable. We think it, therefore it can be. And whether our goals reach as far as curing cancer or as near as having the guts to reach out and hold her hand, we have succeeded simply by reaching.

The sky might be the limit; but so what? The people who said that forgot to mention that we define the sky. In real life there are no boundaries. Think about it: what really is the sky? It’s this pure blue carpet that stretches out endlessly in front of us, egging us on, begging us to take the next step, to take the leap. Sky is endless and so are we.

So, from here on, I promise that I will no longer scoff at the man with his eyes fixed on the sky. I will admire his vision, his patience, his unwavering faith. I may even follow him and look up to the sky myself. And, perhaps, I will linger just long enough to see. And I hope someday you might too.

And maybe pigs can’t fly…yet.