Is The Glass Half-Empty Or Half-Full?
Posted on June 18, 2014
“Is the glass half-full or half-empty?”
This is not as simple a question as some would have you believe. Often, we’re forced to choose either the optimistic side (with the glass being half-full) or the pessimistic side (with the glass being half-empty). I refuse to choose either side. Instead, I believe the world is not black or white but a mash-up of several different shades of dark and light, where there is a deep, rich grey color somewhere in the middle. There are no simple answers in life, and this is the epitome of that sort of backwards thinking.
If you choose half-full, you’re seen as the happy-go-lucky, plucky, not-gonna’-get-me-down individual. Half of the glass ISN’T empty. Empty is negative, and negative is bad. That means that, no, you’re not going to look at it like there’s something missing or that there is some sort of loss situation going on. You are blessed with the ability to look at the bright side of things…like half of the glass still being full of liquid. Hey, at least you still have some of that fruit smoothie left, right? (Yes, you goodie-two-shoes would drink a fruit smoothie in my mind…probably a blend of different sorts of berries, with lots of protein powder mixed into it…)
If you choose half-empty, you’re seen as the human version of Eeyore. Everyone shakes their heads (especially the optimistic people, who are the ones to usually even POSE this question to people in the first place) in silent condemnation and then tries to convince you that it’s the wrong way to look at it. The pessimist would usually say “Shut up! Half of the liquid is missing. I drank it. That means half of it is empty, genius.” So, half of the vodka is still there (Yes, you Eeyore-people would drink vodka in my mind…probably the cheap kind) but there’s NOT MUCH LEFT, so the glass is half-emptied.
Now, before I would even begin to answer that question, I have lots of other questions.
Optimist: “Wait, there aren’t any other questions to ask. It’s either half-full or half-empty. I just know you’ll make the right choice!”
Pessimist: “Whatever. I’m going to go listen to Bullet For My Valentine on the Emo Radio Station and drink some absinthe while I take a bath. The radio will probably fall into the water and electrocute me, but whatever…it doesn’t matter.”
What I want to know first is why can’t it be 100% full? Come on, Optimist. That should be your answer. If we’re really getting down to the meat of your belief system, then why stop at saying the glass is ONLY half full? The cup comprises the whole of one entire fraction. If we’re talking about halves, then that would mean 50% for each half obviously. So if 50% of the cup is full of a vodka smoothie (Yes, in my mind I would drink a vodka smoothie) then the other half of the cup still exists and is now full of air/oxygen/god knows what else.
Another question would be was the glass empty to BEGIN with or was it full of liquid in the first place? That would be my absolute main concern as the answer to that would reflect my honest and truthful answer to this question. Here is my reasoning:If the glass was initially empty when the question was asked, then did someone fill it up only halfway? If they did, then that would mean that the glass was only half-full. HOWEVER if they filled it to the top and then you drank half of it, the glass is now half-emptied because it was originally full. Then you have to get into other things, like WHO was doing the pouring? Maybe they aren’t trained to properly fill a glass to the top *cough*McDonald’s*cough*. WHAT is their motivation in pouring it the way they did? Was the liquid past its due date, and why are they asking me philosophical questions about my beverages? This is why I am terrible at word problems.
Anyway, in all seriousness, the world is not black or white. Life isn’t. Work isn’t. Everyone tries to make it that way, to have some semblance of control or order, but there are too many variables and frankly it stinks to think just inside the box all the time. Think outside the box. Open your mind a little.
Have a vodka smoothie.