What is the third act?

When the gun goes off.

That’s a risky statement in these times of rampant gun violence, but I assure you this is not that.

It’s a reference to the great Russian playwright and short-story master Anton Chekhov: “If you display a gun in the first act, it must go off in the third act.”

It’s also a reference to the stages of our lives. It is customary to think of life in four stages like the seasons. And there is some truth in that. But life can be expressed as a trilogy also, and three is a powerful number in nature.

The Third Act is what we do, what we are, near the end of life, after we grow up, after we have careers and families and homes in the suburbs and all that bullshit.

It’s what we do and what we are when we have the time, the wisdom of our mistakes and the resources to do what we know now is what we want to do. Not what we dream of doing, not what we think we are expected to do, but what we want to do.

It really is a great time of life, if you are not one of the faint-of-heart. It is an all-or-nothing time of life. You either fold or you are all in. You have nothing to lose and you are playing with house money.

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