You May Be Right, I May Be Crazy

I grew up singing Billy Joel songs.

Just the other day, listening to “New York State of Mind” on the radio, I was struck by the line:

I don’t care if it’s Chinatown, or on Riverside

I always sang the line as “Rock Riverside” figuring it was the name of a place in New York, but after nearly 40 years, it occurred to me for the very first time (despite driving to NYC and passing Riverside many times) that the place name was NOT “Rock Riverside”

If Billy Joel was singing “rock Riverside” it would mean that “rock” was not being used as a noun, but a verb (after looking up the lyrics, I see I completely missed the preposition). Forty years of syntax error!

There are things we all think we know. We are so certain of the veracity that we never question the belief, but sometimes we are wrong. I’m not attempting to spread doubt and fear here. I’m simply suggesting:

Be Open to the Possibilities

Don’t hold too firmly to truths you’ve always known. People used to believe the world was flat and that bloodletting cured disease. Discovering you are wrong can be a positive way to grow your understanding, or as Billy Joel sang:

“Maybe I’m a lonely man who’s in the middle of something that he doesn’t really understand.”

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