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A drop in the bucket

As far back as I can remember, I have been thin and lanky. My friends have sometimes told me that I look like a shirt has been draped around a skeleton (or, when they were trying to be funny, a broomstick). 

They were probably right. 

Recently, I started wearing clothes that are one size smaller than what I normally wear. And suddenly, I no longer look like a shirt has been draped around a skeleton. 

There is a reason why wine isn't served in beer glasses. Or the other way around. It is the same reason consultants work twelve hour days when they are at their client location. It is the same reason I write a thousand words a day and not ten thousand. 

The size of the container plays a big role in how we perceive what's inside.

If you were served wine in the kind of beer glass that you get in Munich during Oktoberfest (a litre!), it will feel like a drop in a bucket. But that doesn't mean you can drink a litre of wine if it was served as a full glass.

Containers are not always physical.

We keep score about everything. Everything that we do, everything that we see, watch read, experience, everything that somebody else does, we keep score about. 

The score we keep is how the act measures up to our expectations. I watched The Dark Knight with no expectations. And I absolutely loved it. Then, I watched The Dark Knight Rises, which was the sequel and though I conceded that it was a good movie on it's own, I felt it didn't live up to the standards set by it's predecessor. 

We experience things like Wall Street does. The price of a stock is not just accounting for the current value and performance of the company, but it's future performance discounted to the current date. So, when Apple announces a profit of twenty percent and the stock price drops, it is because the analysts betting on the stock price expected the profits to be higher. 

Similarly, when we have a nice meal at the top rated restaurant in a city, we are not nearly as thrilled about it as we would be if we had the same meal in an unheard of restaurant. 

Happiness is inversely proportional to expectations. 

You can look at something as a drop in the bucket or savour it as a delightfully tasty sip. You define the container. 

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