It is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.

~ Henry David Thoreau ~

Random? Me? Never

October 19th, 2011 ~ Est. reading time: 1 min, 46 secs

Random? Where?

Be honest with me. Do you ever do random things? Most of my life I’ve been accused of being weird, random, eccentric, and well…mad. But that’s okay. I have  broad shoulders (I got them from my wife’s old 1980s jackets).

I believe you and I have a choice. Be ourselves, or be a cardboard cut out. Personally I choose to be me (though I wouldn’t mind taking the cardboard cut out home).  But it doesn’t work that way. We have “consequences.”

Consequences feel like something a disapproving teacher made up. If you don’t “do your ABC’s”/”year’s worth of homework tonight”/”share that candy with the rest of the class” (pick which best fits), then there’ll be consequences.

Hmmm. Why teachers think that a whole class full of kids would want to chew on a half-sucked sweet is beyond me. But that’s school for you. It’s a bit random; in a predictable kind of way.

Kids laughed at my random dress sense when I was in high school. But I ask you, what’s wrong with purple velour bell-bottomed jeans? I thought it was a step up from my brother’s oversized hand-me-down shirts. They were so roomy my hands disappeared. Plus the collar offered about as much chest protection as a plunge bra. At least they were handy if you ever had an itchy chest…not that I recall having them (Itches I mean).

As the random kid from a foreign family I was doomed to be a misfit. My lunch became a source of disgust and racial contempt for my whole class. Don’t tell me you eat that stuff? Eeewww!!! How gross.  That’s how narrow minded it was back then. I mean, it wasn’t like I was eating sheep’s eyes on rye or raw tentacles in aspic. My sandwiches had… wait for it…brown bread! Yes, I know. Awful, isn’t it?

But differences and their consequences used to haunt me. I wanted to fit in but that was impossible. We all need to be who we are.

Years on, I eventually grew into my skin and I stopped wanting to be anyone else. Differences, no matter how random and quirky, are good. Be yourself or give up the best years of your life being a wannabe copy of someone who doesn’t exist. Now that’s a consequence. If that’s our choice, give me ‘random’ anytime.

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  1. cassie says:

    I agree wholeheartedly about the importance of being oneself, whatever that consists of. Tempered by the ongoing quest to be the best person you can be. If you are comfortable with yourself that helps I’m sure.

    As someone who knew Christian prior to him ceasing to wish to be someone else I can attest to his random beauty. I’m enormously pleased to hear of his self acceptance.

  2. noelle says:

    Love the photo of the random owl!