12 August 2011

Friday Follies...
It's often been said that "we are greater than the sum of our parts", and I also believe that we ARE the sum of our parts...period.
In our lives, we meet a great number of people, establish friendships, relationships, and bondings all over the place.
We also have a myriad of personal experiences, unique to each of our lives.
THAT is who we are...and THAT is who we become.
Now, I've always thought that who you are should MEAN something, and hopefully, something that OTHERS are not going to run from a room screaming at the tops of their lungs.
How you present yourself "to the world" should be something you're relatively proud of.
Every time you step out the door to your house, you become an "ambassador" of sorts...
You REPRESENT something...first and foremost, your FAMILY.
Whenever you meet someone, the net result of your parents' tutelage should be shining through.
And, in some cases, you might even EXCEED your parents, as they did their own.
That is something called "evolution"...and it's very subtle at times.
I am from Philadelphia (and damn proud of it), but I'm not representative of the "state of affairs" in that city these days. I, like many other people from that city have CHOSEN to rise above such insanity, and embrace what it means to be "from Philly", and all the GOOD aspects that it includes.
I am also a resident of Pennsylvania AND of Indiana, and as such, I would like to also let anyone that meets me to know that I (now) also embrace what is called "Midwestern charm"...and that means you are welcome to my house, and if I'm able, I will help you any way I can, because people DO that sort of thing.
Some truths like this become UNIVERSAL in nature...they work in ANY city, and in ANY state.
I am also a graduate of Abraham Lincoln High School (in Philly), and I feel I also represent THAT SCHOOL, even though it's been some time since I graduated (1970, to be exact).
I represent my FAMILY, and the values they espoused, as well as the knowledge they have passed on to me (I HAVE added to that substantially since they passed).
And I represent the United State Of America, (thanks to an OATH I swore to many years ago), and all that this nation holds dear. I've been to other countries, and I was ALWAYS aware of being a "stranger in a strange land" (glad Dad never named me GERSHOM...it's an EXODUS thing...LOL), and as a "stranger" (or visitor, if you will), I always observed the "laws of the land", and never became someone that others would look at and say "So, THAT is how an AMERICAN behaves...disgusting."
It's common sense to not "stir the pot" when you're somewhere else. People are watching to see "if you slip up", so never give them reason to believe that OUR nation is not the best on earth.
Clearly, you can see that others are paying attention to how WE conduct ourselves, be it at school, at home, online, or out in public.
And, if you notice, nowhere in all of this did I ever mention the *R* word - RACE.
To me, that should NEVER enter into such things as this.
There are good AND bad of every race...that's just the way society works, but at least those BAD ones make the rest of us look SO damn much better, don't they? (LOL)
They are also the "sum of THEIR parts", and by the looks of things with the bad apples in the bunch, they ain't been all that keen on being ANYTHING to anyone except a damn nuisance.
Now, I said all THAT...to say THIS:
*** There was a story about schoolgirls that posted racy pictures (during a slumber party) on some social networking site...and their school got wind of it and punished the kids (they got suspended).
Well, the good old ACLU (Anti-Civil Losers Union) stepped in and had the school decision REVERSED.
here's the link to the entire story:
Now, to me, this is EXACTLY what I mean when I say you "represent" your school...even OUTSIDE of it.
It becomes a part of WHO YOU ARE...and it follows you through your life like an ever-obedient puppy at your heels.
If you don't want to be known as a slut or a thug...DON'T give people reason to think OTHERWISE, right?
If you DO however, well, that's something else all together, and that is ALSO on YOU, and you alone, but it will impact elsewhere...rest assured.
I know that no one's perfect, and that we all do stupid-ass sh*t in life...hell, that's how we LEARN (to not do them again), and I suppose that "kids will be kids", but in today's society, with ALL the pedophiles out there, or the sexual predators, WHY, on God's green earth would you want to knowingly ENTICE such beings by your behavior?
Yes friends, this becomes another case where our TECHNOLOGY has far-outpaced our ability to use it PROPERLY, and with care.
All "we" want to do is be the person people are always talking about...the "popular" ones.
In MY day, the "popular people" came in TWO flavors:
- Jocks and students with every activity in the school working for them.
- The ones "collecting wood" on the Principal's bench daily.
The rest of us were lumped into the "everyone else" category, but it wasn't such a damn big deal.
In today's world of friending, texting, sexting, and Lord knows what else, we have to be even MORE careful as to what we post, what we allow to post, or what we allow our children to post.
I don't worry about what I post...it's just the PLAIN TRUTH, and most times, it's about as subtle as a mallet through a plate glass window.
I say the students should receive SOME kind of punishment for their actions.
If, by what they posted, these girls cause THEIR school to develop a (false) reputation for having "prostitots" there, that can't be good.
You're gonna wind up with a drooling bunch of pervs at the damn fences around the perimeter.
And you don't WANT to have to step on anyone's 1st amendment rights, but when what is done causes MORE harm than good, that sets the stage for far worse things to happen.
I don't believe these kids were enjoying their "right" to PURSUE HAPPINESS, for I think they can find it elsewhere, and not by acting foolish online.
I was a kid once (believe it or not), so I can understand some of this.
But, do they "need" to be THAT popular, that they would act inappropriately while socially-networking?
Is this indeed another instance of misplaced "needs", or perhaps having WANTS supplant NEEDS?
I guess the parents of the two girls are perfectly FINE with this, otherwise, they'd not say a damn thing, and punish the girls accordingly.
(maybe they're too busy trying to be their "BFFs" instead of PARENTS?)
Yes, another case of uncivil behavior..at least it wasn't a damn riot complete with looting and burning (yet).
Hey, maybe the parents don't CARE how their families are represented in the outside world...that would explain a lot.
And when people see the way they act, they'll say "typical Americans...how hedonistic and self-effacing they are".
I'm sorry, but I think we can do BETTER than that...and we should.
I'm not saying we look down our noses at the rest of the damn world (although many times, we certainly have reason to)...I'm saying we make sure that when people think of America, we try and be the best Americans we possibly can, and if that means we stop and THINK before we do something stupid...fine.
If that means we realize that EVERY decision has it's RESULTS...and/or CONSEQUENCES, maybe we'd best take some time and ponder what might happen.
Yeah, it's that old friend of ours named ACCOUNTABILITY who's come to call...and we should take some time to entertain it.
Actions will ALWAYS speak louder than words, but understanding the MEANING of those words in the first place can often prevent dumbass actions from occurring at all.
We are truly the sum of our parts...sum fun, right folks?
Therein lies the lesson for today.
DO have yourselves a fantastic weekend.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and as always...
Stay safe out there, America.


Phil Marx said...


My first trip to a foreign country was Israel when I was eleven. We were in a cave by the Dead Sea, looking at some of the original scrolls that were kept there in sealed glass cases. The room was a bit dark, and I had apparently missed the warning about light being harmful to the documents, so I made sure and had my flash in the little pocket camera I was carrying with me. Believe me, I definitely heard the warnings the second time - as did my father and everyone else in our group. So if you’re ever in Israel, and you think you hear people whispering under their breathe “There’s another one of those f****** Americans” - sorry about that!

Best regards,
Ambassador Marx

Bob G. said...

That's amazing you got to go somewhere I would love to visit.

And yes, people in other countries tend to be VERY "protective" of their artifacts and relics.

If I ever had an instance where I could NOT use a flash for the camera, I always carried some HIGH SPEED film...works just as good.

Don't know how that works with these new-fangled ones, though...(no film)?

Thanks for the "tour", Buddy.

If I ever DO get to Israel, I'll send along an apology (or two)...lol..

Have a great weekend.

Stay safe up there.

ms nk rey said...

I have always tried to be as honest and fair and giving in life as I can. I have made many bad choices in my life and I have paid the price for them, as have my boys, but I am a sum total of all those choices and I think I am at a good place and would proudly say I am the sum of my parts. Great post Bobby G. There is always more to learn and you are a great teacher. :)

Bob G. said...

If I am ANY teacher at all, it's only because I've had better people TEACHING ME.

Fortunately, I've learned to LISTEN to what they have to say, and not just hear them speak.

And some times, we can even learn from what we DON'T see...and DON'T hear.

I have learned more about myself by reading what people like YOURSELF have to say, and that makes my journey even more enlightening.
So, thank YOU...very much.

ANd thanks for stopping by and daying what' on your mind.
Much appreciated.

Stay safe down there.

Slamdunk said...

Thanks for the pep talk Bob, and you are right about all of us as representatives. The pressure on kids today to have a certain image is overwhelming--thanks to the media. I was happy to just play sports, stay out of trouble in school, and just do what I had to to get out. Not sure how different I would be today if I had to worry about my Twitter and FB all the time.

Bob G. said...

I've always felt that it never matters how old we are that we cannot be "reminded" from time to time as to WHO WE ARE...
And I don't mean just plain MR/MRS/MS (fill in the blank), but our status in our neighborhood, city, state, nation and even the world.

We need to represent all that can be GOOD about our nation, and that usually starts with FAMILY.

It's one of the cornerstones of morality, and it's something many in this nation hae shoved aside.

But, it's good to know that many people are either rediscovering it, or rekindling it within their lives and hearts.

BTW, I'm neither on FB or Twitter...
(I like to fret about as FEW things as possible these days...got enough on the plate as it is...lol)

Hey, thanks for stopping on by to comment.

Stay safe out there.