Monthly Archives: January 2018

The Perfect Map

‘The Perfect Map’ – A Zoom-Out Fable Once upon a time there was a king who lived in a beautiful palace filled with treasures. In his early years, he would run around his palace, his heart filled with joy and delight at his surroundings. His favourite sight was the ceiling of the great hall which…

Bill Hicks Zoom-Out – It’s Just a Ride

I was recommending some comedians to a friend the other day. As well as being entertaining, comedians are natural perspective-shifters – they show us funny ways to look at the world. I’m particularly drawn to those comedians, often self-deprecating, that poke fun at the less glamorous or darker aspects of human existence, so recommended George Carlin, Marc Maron, Louis CK.

It was then I remembered Bill Hicks. A friend introduced me to Bill Hicks the best part of 20 years ago and I’d not watched any of his material for a long time. This prompted me to jump on YouTube and watch Revelations again. His seminal performance at the Dominion Theatre in London 1993. Who can forget “Goat Boy”?

I watched it for pure entertainment value.

And then, as he dons his dark coat and hat to close the show he asks:

“Is there a point to my act? I would say there is. I have to.”

His answer is his famous “It’s just a ride” monologue – full transcript below – but don’t just read it, hear it from the man himself – it’s beautifully Zoom-Out-esque. See how many Zoom-Out Principles you recognise.  Bill Hicks is a honourary Zoomologist for sure.

Full transcript – Bill Hicks “It’s just a ride”

You’ve been fantastic, and I hope you enjoyed it.  There is a point.  Is there a point to all of this?  Let’s find a point.

Is there a point to my act?  I would say there is.  I have to.

The world is like a ride, in an amusement park.  And when you choose to go on it, you think it’s real, because that’s how powerful our minds are.  And the ride goes up and down, and round and round.  It has thrills and chills, and it’s very brightly coloured, and it’s very loud and it’s fun.  For a while.

Some people have been on the ride for a long time, and they begin to question: “Is this real, or is this just a ride?”

And other people have remembered, and they come back to us, and they say, “Hey, don’t worry.  Don’t be afraid, ever.  Because this is just a ride.”

And we . . . kill those people.  Ha-ha!

“Shut him up! We have a lot invested in this ride! Shut him up! Look at my furrows of worry. Look at my big bank account, and my family. This has to be real.”

It’s just a ride.  But we always kill those good guys who try and tell us that, you ever notice that?  And we let the demons run amok.

But it doesn’t matter, because it’s just a ride, and we can change it any time we want.  It’s only a choice.  No effort.  No worry.  No job.  No savings and money.

[It’s] a choice, right now, between fear and love.  The eyes of fear want you to put bigger locks on your door, buy guns, close yourself off.  The eyes of love, instead, see all of us as one.

Here’s what we can do to change the world, right now, into a better ride:  Take all that money that we spend on weapons and defense each year and, instead, spend it feeding, clothing, and educating the poor of the world – which it would do many times over, not one human being excluded.  And we can explore space together, both inner and outer, forever.  In peace.

Thank you very much, you’ve been great.  I’ve hoped you enjoyed it.  You’re fantastic!  Thank you!  Thank you very much.


This was the sight that greeted me each morning as I emerged from Waterloo Station, London, during 2016 when I was working with one client. I fancifully took this as an omen of Zoom-Out due to the green eye resemblance to the Zoom-Out Logo:  Whether is was an accurate perspective – truly an omen – or not,…


Self-Pity I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself. – D H Lawrence  (1885 – 1930) Words can be powerful tools for helping us gain a perspective on our perspectives. A perspective on our feelings. Words can help…

The Doors of Perspective

The Doors of Perception is a philosophical essay, released as a book, by Aldous Huxley. First published in 1954, it details his experiences when taking mescaline. The book takes the form of Huxley’s recollection of a mescaline trip that took place over the course of an afternoon in May 1953. The book takes its title from…

Fish head

An amusing photo, capturing an instant in time, where the environment, a person and the viewer combine in a very particular way. How many times does this happen day to day? You observe a person in a time, place and environment under unique conditions and, based on a single ‘snapshot’, form an entire perspective on…

What do you see?

What do you see in this painting of a rhino painting? One interpretation is that the rhino doesn’t realise that the horn is not a part of the world out there but a part of its own being It’s a great metaphor for nudging us to be constantly vigilant when interpreting the world around us…

Fear of Falling

  Ever had an overwhelming feeling of falling or a fear of falling? Later, looking back, realising it was just an illusion. A very powerful one but a sub-optimisation of your reality none the less.    

Zoomologist – Definition

zoomologist [zoom-ol-uh-jist] noun (short) A practitioner and student of helpful Zoom-Outs and Zoom-Ins (long) A person dedicated to the study and practice of recognising when a person is Zoomed-In on something unhelpful and identifying ways to Zoom-Out (and optionally Zoom-In again) on something more helpful . A person dedicated to the art and science of encouraging…

The Time Machine

The Time Machine is a science fiction novel by H. G. Wells, published in 1895 and written as a frame narrative. The work is generally credited with the popularization of the concept of time travel by using a vehicle that allows an operator to travel purposely and selectively forwards or backwards in time. The term “time machine”, coined by Wells, is now…

Solomon Grundy

Solomon Grundy Solomon Grundy, Born on a Monday, Christened on Tuesday, Married on Wednesday, Took ill on Thursday, Grew worse on Friday, Died on Saturday, Buried on Sunday, That was the end, Of Solomon Grundy. – Anon, English nursery rhyme