“I am a great admirer of mystery and magic. Look at this life – all mystery and magic.”
~Harry Houdini

Sometimes, you can’t explain magic. It just happens.

Elizabeth and I took the girls down to Southern Illinois University to witness the eclipse on August 21st. Carbondale, where the school is located, was one of the prime locations to view the celestial event.

Have you ever witnessed a total solar eclipse? I heard that some people that saw 70 or 80 percent coverage were a bit underwhelmed. Not so when you hit 100. Starting at 11:52, we saw the moon start to nibble away at the sun and, I’ll agree, for most of the time until totality, it didn’t seem very special. I’ve seen darker days with a little bit of overcast. It wasn’t until the final moments right before totality that things began to feel strange and mystical.

I’m still processing it, but in that magical time, the world turns upside down. Darkness descends in a moment. The stars come out. The entire horizon, 360 degrees, looks like it’s dawning. The sun, no longer a blazing golden orb, is instead a ring of silvery fire and you can safely look at it with your naked eye. The birds and the insects become silent and even the humans quiet, as if they are waiting in breathless anticipation of what our world is about to become.

Two and a half minutes later it’s over. The first sliver of sun peeks from behind the moon and daylight returns. The magic ends and, as the sun once again regains ascendance over the day, we return to our everyday lives.

How does this relate to networking? I’m not sure it does. I mean, I could create an analogy about how this represents going to a networking event and if you don’t pay attention during the magic moment, you’ll miss out on an opportunity. Or I could write something about being aware of the magic moments when you discover the chance to be of service to someone in your network. Or I could even write that the mystical time where the world turns upside down is like when you discover that the surest way to serve yourself through networking is by finding ways to be of service to others.

Yeah, I could do any of those, but you know what?

Sometimes you can’t explain magic. It just happens.