The Canyon of Wile E. Coytote

Jul 29th, 2003 by Tony in The Wizard of Ads

Wile E. Coyote is a Mensa genius whose only thought is to catch the Roadrunner. With the unlimited resources of Acme Corporation at Wile E.’s disposal, one might easily consider the Roadrunner doomed. But it never seems to work out that way.

Wile E. Coyote is a victim of overplanning. It is this overplanning, not the Roadrunner, that lands Wile E. at the bottom of the canyon.

Overplanning assumes that a plan can be and should be prepared for every possible contingency. Unfortunately, life doesn’t come in that small a package. It’s easy to respond to actual circumstances, but impossible to respond to imaginary ones.

Overplanning comes naturally to any person with a highly developed intellect and a morbid fear of failure. Western society has placed such a premium on success that few of us can bear the thought of failure. Yet failure is the key to success.

The person most likely to succeed is the one who recognises the temporary nature of failure and consequently has no fear of it –
a person who knows that each failure brings him one step closer to success.

–Roy H. Williams, The Wizard of Ads, #87

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