The Heart of the Matter
February 08, 2008
Forget About the Box, Get Out of the Cave!

See the caveman to your left? That's Og. He's the protagonist of my new book, Awake at the Wheel: Getting Your Great Ideas Rolling (in an Uphill World). The word "protagonist" is not in Og's vocabulary. Never was, never will be. Even I don't use the word "protagonist" all that much -- though I have used it three times in this paragraph.

Hmmm... That's pretty odd.

Then again, the experience of inventing the wheel was pretty odd, too. Which is what Og did. 24,000 years ago. Long before Game Boy, i-Pod, or Starbucks. And yes, long before the Mesopotamians -- the people who usually get all the credit for the wheel -- some 20,300 years after my main man, Og.

Hey, when was the last time you used the word "Mesopotamian?" That's another word not in Og's vocabulary.

Actually, Og didn't need a big vocabulary. He had something else going for him: Neanderthalic genius. Stone age brilliance. Originality.

Og, you see, was the first innovator. Intrinsically motivated, he was. Fascinated. Inspired. Mojo-driven. And while he was not without imperfections, he needed no attaboys, cash awards, or stock options to follow his muse.

Back in Og's time, when men were men, and stones were stones, even the idea of an idea was unthinkable. And yet... somehow, he had one -- an IDEA, that is -- and not just your dime a dozen variety. Nope. A GREAT idea, a BIG idea, or what I like to call an "out of the cave" idea: The wheel.

Ah... but I go on too long. If Og were here, he'd be frowning by now, shrugging his stooped shoulders, wondering in his delightfully pre-verbal way what other new ideas and discoveries awaited his wonderfully hairy touch.

Want to order the book now? (Og gets 10% of every sale). Go ahead. Help him put bear meat on the table.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at February 8, 2008 12:29 PM

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