Monday, November 12, 2007

Veteran's Day

Y'all know I have a very large soft spot for those who serve in uniform. I got this video e-mailed to me today and it damn near left me in tears. I figured I'd share it with everyone. Please watch it, it is REALLY worthwhile. The girl who made the video is only 15, but she's a very wise young lady . . .

Thank you to everyone out there who has ever worn a uniform!!!!


Monday, November 05, 2007

Yin vs. Yang

Men and women think differently. (I know, you're saying: "Well . . . DUH!")

I know we think differently in general terms but I'm referrring to a specific mind set here. One of the biggest areas we differ in, is what we see as our "role" in this life. Women seem to be content with their position in life and often (not alway, I know, but I'm generalizing here, people!) have no desire to move beyond that role. They want security in their lives more than anything else. Stability, consistency, and reliability are what they want.

Speaking from the male end of things, I can't imagine three words in the english language I would less like applied to my life! Men think differently. We need purpose. We need to pursue something that will lend meaning to our lives, to feel that we were here for some reason beyond breeding and providing for our family. Whenever I think of this subject, I'm reminded of Richard Dreyfus and his description of sharks in the film "Jaws":

" . . . what we are dealing with here is a perfect eating machine...... it's really a miracle of evolution...... all this machine does , is swim..... and eat..... and make little sharks . . . and thats all!"

I imagine that's a fine life for a shark, but as a man . . . it's a little disappointing, ya' know? Are we supposed to grow, have young, support our young until they grow, then die and let them carry on the cycle? I have to believe there's more to it than that! Why am I self-aware? Why do I have the mental and emotional capability built inside me that let me question the process if it's the only way to be? Evolution favors strength. If pursuing meaning wasn't a vital part of life, I wouldn't have the capacity to note meaning's abscence, now would I?

As you might imagine, this is a bone of contention between The Wife and I. My pursuit of things beyond the status-quo of our current life greatly disturbs her. She sees it as a threat of sorts. She seems to think such pursuits indicate that I'm not happy with my life, or with her, or in what we've built together. She couldn't be any more wrong, but I can't seem to convice her of that. She is content to be where/what/who we are at this moment and doesn't understand why I'm looking for more. Truth is, I can't imagine NOT looking for more. Seems to me the day you stop looking is the day they bury your useless ass! Failing to understand my thought process, she writes it all off to testosterone and my "male ego". Is it ego? I don't think so . . . I think everyone should be looking for their purpose in life. There has to be a reason why we are here, and self-aware, when other creatures about us are driven purely by instinct and survival needs. Women should be asking the same questions of themselves and looking for what things in this life will help them be who they feel they should be. (I apologize for that goofy sentence structure, but that's the best way I can put it right now.)

It may be just The Wife who sees things this way but I get the same type of vibe/input from all the women I know. It could be a cultural thing I guess. Most of the women I know are white, middle-class, in the 30-50 age bracket and from Western European stock. Maybe it's a 21st century America thing? I don't know, but I can't even begin to understand it. Standing in one place for 30+ years (ya' know: metaphorically!) and waiting for the Reaper to show up at your door and cart you off to the hereafter seems to me the worst sort of hell, but they all seem fine with the idea. They'll have bigger homes, nicer cars, more cash in the bank, and no surprises and/or fears to disrupt their viewings of "Desperate Housewives". I don't want that. I WANT the unexpected. I want to push at my own limits until the day the Reaper shows up, and let me tell ya: that sumbitch best be wearin' running shoes cuz he's gonna have to catch this old man! " ;-)

Seriuosly, just because The Boy becomes and adult won't mean I'm done and should go lay down in the grass. I still have many more years (I hope!) of life and I intend to spend them doing the things that are important to me. The first half of my life has been very much about doing what I "had to" do. I intend to spend the rest of it doing what I "want to" do. That doesn't mean ditching The Wife for an 18 year old tramp and buying a new Corvette (Though I will continue whistling at both and saying "Damn, that's fine!") I just refuse to settle for "We're comfortable, why risk it?" when I can still chart a different -better- course for my life. I have one goal only in my life and it confounds The Wife because she just doesn't understand it. All I want is to die knowing that I did something important here. Something nobody else could have done. It doesn't need to be anything big, I just need to know I was here for a reason . . . that I was -at least once- valuable for who I am, not just what I could provide.

Does that make sense? Well it does to me, but obviously not to The Wife! Anyway, I've bored you enough for one day . . .