Shoot for the Moon?

Norman Vincent Peale said it first; 1990s BET host, Donny Simpson  closed his show with it; and–most recently–motivational speaker, Les Brown laid claim to it.

That “It” is the idiom which advises that one should, “Shoot for the moon and if you miss, at least you’ll be among the stars.” What it fails to mention is, the closest star–besides our own sun–is over 4 light/years away and would take our fastest rocket 137,000 years to reach.

Of course it would only take 156 days to reach our sun/star but let’s assume that the idiom was not referring to the sun when placing our failed effort to hit the moon “among the stars”.

Given these facts, a better idea would be to; “Shoot for the moon and do not miss, for missing could leave one hopelessly lost in the cold, dark void of deep space”.

The original maxim seems to suggest that settling for less than the desired goal is OK, as long as you try. But, why settle?


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