Balancing Cheesecake and SW Airlines Jesus

I met a gentleman  of maybe 60 years of age on a Southwest Airlines flight flying home to Houston from somewhere.  He was from Guatemala as I recall.  His English was not so good but good enough for us to talk through most of a two hour flight.  He was a deeply religious man who was returning home to his family from his job working on oil pipelines in remote parts of the Canadian wilderness during the dead of winter.  We talked about his interesting work which entailed wearing cold weather gear akin to a space suit in order to battle the elements.

But more importantly he talked at great length of how important it is in life to maintain balance in all things….work, family, health, etc.

I admiringly refer to him as SW Airlines Jesus whenever I tell his story.

He had quite the spiritual quality about him.

When he asked me if I understood what he was trying to tell me about the importance of balance I shared this story with him.

Once upon a time, many years ago, the Catmull family went through a Cheesecake phase.  You know how it is….you get enamored with a particular recipe or dessert and it becomes your “go to” for a little while.

Well during this phase I became a big fan of the graham cracker crust that normally accompanies a cheesecake. In her quest to make the perfect cheesecake per my exacting (read that ‘ridiculous’) standards…my wife, Kat, increased the depth of the crust in the recipe ever so slightly.

MAN was that good!  I mean not just a little ‘gooder’….but a whole heck of a lot ‘gooder’!  What a great move by the cheesecake chef…

…and so she increased it some more.

And it got rave reviews!  And then some more….and more…and more….until finally we found ourselves with a graham cracker cake with a cream cheese frosting, basically.

It was not….gooder.

It was not good at all because the cream cheese in a cheesecake is not there for the purpose of complimenting the graham cracker crust.  It’s the other way around.

Sure, you can flip the script on who or what is complimenting who or what….but you get a different result.

Know your role, Graham Cracker Crust.  Know your role.

Balance in all things is the key to happiness!

SW Airlines Jesus understood enough of my ramblings to be amused….and that’s the goal on a long flight!  I will not soon forget my friend and I wish we had stayed in touch.  I will also never forget how you can absolutely have too much of a good thing.


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4 Replies to “Balancing Cheesecake and SW Airlines Jesus”

  1. Balance is intentional. I have to tell myself this all the time. I am traveling again tomorrow and need to finish some work and packing but my 13 year old daughter is a helper at vacation bible school this week and I decided to come with her this evening. I am so glad I did. It gave me such perspective. All these little children full of laughter and joy. All these volunteers giving their time and service to make costumes and sets and arrange activities and games so that someone may discover the love and mercy and grace of God. I am proud of my girl. She is learning the importance of helping others. I can pack later.

    1. Work. Is it who you are…or what you do? And it’s not just work, right? It’s everything and anything that is marginal to what you are at your core…whatever that may be.

      Thank you for sharing Triple Threat!

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