As french icon Gerard Depardieu blithely whispers to Queen Latifah in the 2006 film "Last Holiday": the secret to life is… butter.
And, though his character is a chef, and there are many other things to consider beyond food when thinking about the "key to all life," in this case, I think he may be right.
It all boils down to a simple day-to-day moment I had today.
Nothing heroic, no one screaming, or jumping off cliffs.
Growing up, my family always purchased butter in sticks. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that; it is the classic form of packaging the substance, it's usually the purest form of butter, and it's extra helpful to grease pans with the leftover wrappers. They are ideal for large families who will go through a couple sticks per week. I, on the other hand, when living alone end up wasting sticks as I don't use them fast enough or have no solid way of resealing them.
What's important about that observation is the realization I had yesterday in the grocery store as I was pondering my butter decision.
I automatically reached for the stick butter, but my hand paused, swinging in the balance like a fleshy pendulum, when my eye caught a tub of spreadable butter. As an organic junkie, and overall aware-of-health person, I pushed the thought aside, my mind citing various chemicals as being at fault in those "lesser butters." Only the pure stuff for me!
I looked back and was pleasantly surprised to see that this butter was in a resealable tub yet, in fact, was still only pure milk, with the simple addition of olive oil and sea salt to keep it soft. A day later, and I am hooked. No messy stick wrappers, no wasted butter!
Wow, how many times had I experienced frustration for no reason other than I was stuck in a habit? When, if I had just allowed some change into my life, would things have been more effective and more joyful?
You may be thinking: how does this apply to life? Or: "Butter's great, but I'm a vegan."
The fact is that butter has been made a certain way, in a certain mold, for centuries. A new, more efficient way has evolved, and can be easily obtained. The battle lies in the decision to choose a different way when tradition feels so familiar.
Well, millennials such as myself, we are largely a gaggle of "mover and shaker" types. We vote for candidates like Bernie Sanders, the most progressive Presidential candidate the United States' has ever seen. We are the generation that pressured Hillary Clinton's platform to follow suit once Bernie was out of the running. There is an enormous shift across our nation at the moment with people vocalizing their need for change throughout movements such as Black Lives Matter and the Standing Rock movements, respectively, amongst many others.
We as a society have an opportunity to follow through on these movements.
It is going to be up to us to effect change in the coming years, no matter who tells us differently.