10 Things I Learned from Indiana Jones
After a few serious posts, I’ve decided to break things up a bit. There’s a reason I have a trickster in the name of the blog!
Indiana Jones, the last movie notwithstanding, has been a big inspiration in my life since I first saw him as a wide-eyed teenager. Matter of fact, I can trace the origin of my love for adventurous things, and therefore this blog, directly to the character and the movies. I crafted this list a year ago just as a bit of fun right before Crystal Skull came out and stumbled across it after cleaning around my desk last week. Get your hat on your head, grab your jacket, and I hope you enjoy the run down memory lane.
Ten Things I Learned from Indiana Jones
1. You can fly even though you never learned how to land.
In The Last Crusade, Indy and his dad escape from the Nazi blimp by using the small plane attached to its belly. The lesson here is you often need to press forward even if you only have half of the skills necessary for completion. Just be warned that the final bit of the process could be a bit rough if you’re not REAL careful.
2. If something looks perfect you might want to check the details.
The finest example I can think of is the first scene in the temple ruins with the golden Chachapoyan fertility idol. Satipo – “Let us hurry. There is nothing to fear here.” Indy – “That’s what scares me.” It’s called taking the time to be aware of your surroundings and not plowing forward.
3. Never bring a sword to a gunfight.
You know the scene I’m talking about. It’s classic, beautiful, and an excellent reminder about overconfidence.
4. X does mark the spot occasionally.
After looking through the Venetian library for clues to the entrance to a tomb, Indy finally gets a better perspective to look down to see a large X on the floor. Sometimes, things really ARE that obvious. You just need to change your perspective slightly to see what you need to do next.
5. Never trust a monkey.
Just don’t. Ever. Like raptors, they’re sneaky. (Raptors. That’s a different movie altogether.)
6. Just because you were thrown through a truck windshield doesn’t mean the fight’s over.
Perseverance, ingenuity, and toughness usually help in getting the job done. It’s not over till it’s over. Besides, when you show up again, you get to surprise the crap out of the guy who did it!
7. Always go back for your hat.
Everyone has a style, something that makes them who they are. It might be a sense of humor, a stance, a passion, or always wearing a fedora in adventurous situations. Always keep it with you and do your best to never lose it. Take care of it and the wind will blow it back to you.
8. “Fortune and Glory” are nothing compared to saving a bunch of kids.
In Temple of Doom, Indy initially starts the exploration because he’s interested in fortune and glory. Then, he finds out what he truly needs to do. Material titles and gains are little in comparison to helping or supporting those that need it.
9. When trapped in a pit of snakes keep your wits and take a look around. You might be standing next to the solution.
When Belloq traps Indy and Marion in the Well of Souls, Indy thinks outside the box. He realizes that the snakes have to come from somewhere. He climbs and then smashes one of the giant statues into the wall where they are coming from and thus ensures escape.
10. Everything you ever wanted is nothing compared to the love of those close to you.
In the poignant final scene of Last Crusade, Indy is fingertips away from the Holy Grail which sits on the ledge of a crevasse. His father who has been chasing the Grail his entire adult life holds him in place with an ever-slipping grip. Indy cannot get close enough and his father cannot hold him. Finally, his father calls Indy by his nickname which jars Indiana out of his passion. His father then says, simply, “Let it go.”
No trinket, bauble, artifact, or quest for anything similar can replace the relationships with those you love. Those that forget this are doomed to fall into a deep crack in the Earth, never to be seen again.