[Medium read, 700 words]

This a Daruma Doll.


I know a lot more about the Daruma Doll than I did back then, thank you Wikipedia.

In a nutshell: Japanese. It is seen “as a symbol of perseverance and good luck”, and a talisman that “is rich in symbolism”. It also invokes the Buddhist monk Bodhidharma, which I believe is not the one connected to the eponymous character in Point Break, but has his own story.

Enough links. On with my own story.


The doll was given to me by best friend, Guy Morphett, in 1985.
Post-high school, he had recently returned from an exchange year in Japan;
But something had changed.
My mind of the time could not discern.

We’d connected in that last year of high school; a love of home brew and our first shitbox cars drew us close. He had access to a push-button auto Morris; I had access to a tired Volkswagen. He was acting as navigator in the VW when I wrote it off in an otherwise harmless low-speed single vehicle accident.

His separation to Japan left us both a bit lonely, but eventually he returned.
Then he presented me with the Doll;
and asked me to set a goal.


I said “I want a Supercar”!
This was, technically, at the time, a Lamborghini Countach – and despite his disappointment, I started to fill in one of the eyes.

1983 Lamborghini Countach LP500S

0-60 mph (sec):


0- 1/4mile (sec):


To him, perhaps it felt like I should have set a loftier goal: “family harmony”, even “world peace” maybe.
And I did not understand the timeline attached to the doll.

But all of that is no longer relevant.
Nor has it ever been, under the cold laser of truth.
So digress with me. I did understand the value of setting goals.

Maxwell Maltz

In 1976, no less, I was exposed to the workings of one Maxwell Maltz, in a primary school environment – by a learned teacher called Andrew Mackenzie. One of two Andrew Macs teaching at the time in our burgeoning campus, as it turned out. Anyway.


My belief in the lessons imparted in those formative days were indeed productive. Many of my harshest critics since call me an “overachiever”; even the ultimate accolade, “lucky”.
It needs to be said that those lessons bore fruit (although it’s possible I wasn’t listening hard during sessions four, five, and six – so that took a lot longer).


Back to 1985, and the changed relationship with Guy.
(This won’t take much longer).

Because two weeks later, he was gone.
By his own hand, with a gun that was known to be in his family home.

By the time the news reached me, the celebration of his life was over – a rapid ceremony – and there was nothing left for me but to grieve and wonder.

This event has plagued me for 34 years, never mind my own non-exclusive dalliances with mental health. But the Daruma has never drifted too far from my side; indeed, when the need came upon me yesterday, I pulled the artefact in under ten minutes.

Why locate it now?

Yesterday, and in absolute demonstration of The First Secret, I took delivery of a supercar. Looking at the numbers, it’s demonstrably superior to that Lamborghini I once set my eyes upon.

2019 Tesla Model 3 Performance

0-60 mph (sec):


0- 1/4mile (sec):


So I’m about to ceremoniously fill in the second eye.
And knowing what I know now, I’ll commit to taking the doll to Japan, and being part of the burning.

The box is ticked.
Closure is coming.
I’m going to need a new doll.

To flex a lyric:

What a joy
It is
Getting old.


What have I learned in this 34 year period?

  • Set goals.
    Realistic timelines will assist with practicality; but if you don’t really understand, and just want, then set the goal – it’s up to you then to review and provide a framework.
  • Flex the rules.
    Rules are simply a construct that is not of your making or choice. If you see a better way, express yourself. Even better, become a rule maker.
  • We are all suffering.
    Know that we all suffer in our own ways; and reach out. Answers are out there.

Live long and prosper, friend.

By Luke Oliver

I'm having an interesting life.You can contact me on 0429 020865.