Skip to main content

The continuing story of Adopted Daughter,
Part I  Part II  Part III  Part IV

Part V

There are so many ways to learn valuable lessons.  I generally pick just about the hardest I can find.  I think I love the challenge. (Or as some have suggested I just have no common sense.)  Before everything became Huge Supermarkets, there used to be small mom and pop grocery stores in every neighborhood in Salt Lake City.

One day mom sent me to the market about two blocks from home to get a loaf of bread.  She gave me exactly the right amount of money to get the bread, and not a penny more.  We were a frugal family.  Bread was a quarter in those days. . .no wonder I'm in shock when I see $2.79 at the store here in Rigby.  You remember my terminal curiosity?  Well there was no way I could just walk into that small store, go right up to the bread, grab a loaf and then pay for it without me having to wander around and look at all the things on the shelves.  Uh oh, there was a package of chiclets gum that I just had to have.  Now how was I going to do that?  I had the quarter for the bread and no more.  I bet if the store keeper isn't looking I could just stick that package of gum into my pocket. . . . .and. . .yep, he was doing something else, not looking at me.  Into the pocket the package of gum went.  My heart was pounding wondering if I was going to get away with my crime.  I sort of strolled casually up to the counter. . .I was pretty sure you had to look casual in order not to be caught. . .I put the bread on the counter and handed him the quarter I had been clutching in my sweaty hand.   I had to be really careful not to run out of the store, that would not look good.  So I made myself just slowly walk over to the door and close it gently behind me.  Down the steps slowly I went, and when I was sure that he wouldn't be able to see me, I started running as fast as I could go.  I ran and ran until I was running up the steps to my back door at home.  I gave mom the bread and then, very casually wandered off to my bedroom.  I hid the gum in my sock draw because I knew if mom saw it I would be in BIG, B. I. G. trouble.   The rest of the evening I was thinking about getting into that gum and how great is was going to be to chew it.  Since I had a whole package, I thought it would be fun to see how many pieces I could cram in my mouth and chew all at once.  Yeah, that was an exciting plan.  Finally dinner was over and dishes were done and bed time came on the slowest clock I had ever watched.  No problems with getting me off to bed that night.

At last, tucked in my bed and the light turned out, mom off to do her mom things before she went to bed, I got up and got that gum out of my drawer.  One, two, three, yeah let's make it four pieces of gum went into my mouth.  Chew, chew, chew, I really enjoyed that peppermint flavor.  At some point I finally got tired and decided I better go to sleep.  I took the wad of gum out of my mouth and put it in the waste basket, then crawled into bed and was pretty soon sound asleep.  Who knew a life of crime would be so satisfying?  Not an ounce of a guilty conscience either.  Sometime in the middle of the night my mom came into my room and turned the light on asking me what in the world was wrong.  Dazed by sleep and blinded by the light I didn't know what she meant, except my stomach really was hurting.  I was pretty dazed and confused and I could hardly imagine what my mother was going on and on about and how did she know what a stomach ache I had anyway?  Something important to remember:  Things are not always what they appear to be.  My mother was asking me over and over again what did I eat?  Did I eat something?  As I gazed around the room by my bed and in my bed all I could see was shit.  Yes, the real stuff. . .fecal matter everywhere.  My mother was pretty frantic, no doubt wondering if I had some rare disease contracted from playing in the deepest darkest jungles of Africa as I often did. . .oh, that would be the imaginary Africa.   I meekly showed her what was left of the package of gum.  I mean, I had to she was going to burst a vein or something if I didn't show her what I had eaten.  Feenamint!  Feenamint, the safe easy laxative in chewing gum form.  Chew one piece to relieve constipation over night.  For adults.  No more than 2 pieces in 24 hours.  If problems persist, check with your doctor.  Not only did I have to get up, take a bath, change my pajamas, help mom clean up the horrible mess, and change the sheets, I also had to tell her how and where I got the gum.  Ouch!  That was really hard, but I told her.  I was sick for a couple of days, and I was very darn certain my life of crime was over.  But mom took me back down to the store and made me give the half opened package back to the store owner and tell him what I did.  The only way I could pay for this pilfered merchandise was to work it off.  Every day for a week after school I had to go to the store and sweep the floor with a broom that was way too big for me.  It never occurred to me ever again that I might want to steal something.  Stealing was a pretty shitty experience in my view.

We had a big console radio in our living room.  It was a magic box to be sure.  On Saturday mornings there were the best stories on a program called "Let's pretend", and then over the top dramas on "Lux Radio Theater."  Sunday afternoons and evenings after church were the best though, because of "The Green Hornet," "The Shadow," "Nick Carter, Master Detective", "The Thin Man" and oh so many more.  Sometimes during the week at night, dad would listen to the college ballgames, especially basketball.  When BYU played the University of Utah, it was serious business.  I used to listen to them with him.  Well, listen is not exactly descriptive of what I did.  I had to play the games as the announcer described them, running back and forth between two overstuffed chairs on opposite sides of the room pretending that they were the baskets and I was Cousey or Havelechek. . . "She steals the ball, dribbles down court, no one near her, she stops, she jumps,  she shoots.  BASKET! the crowd is going wild!  Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!, Cousey/Shirley does it again!"  It was not enough that this dialogue should go on in my head I had to make the commentary out loud.  My father was amazingly patient.  Although he would ask me to "settle down now," several times, that would last about 2 or 3 minutes  and I would be up and in the game again.  I don't think he ever really got to listen to a whole game.  What a good dad.

Those days seemed to melt like a Salvadore Dali painting as I transitioned into personhood and became 10, 11, 12 years old.  I discovered poetry.  Emily Dickinson:  "I'm nobody, who are you?  Are you nobody too?  Then there's a pair of us, don't tell, they'd banish us, you know. . ." ; Robert Frost:  ". . .I chose the road less traveled, and that has made all the difference. . .," Amy Lowell, Carl Sandberg, e e cummings, Edna St Vincent Millay. . .Edna St Vincent Millay, was there ever a name that should belong to a poet more than hers? oh my:    "My candle burns at both ends;    It will not last the night;  But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends--It gives a lovely light!"  or the stunning verse brought forth from her 19 year old heart in Renascence, the first stanza of which brings the once fully memorized verses flooding back to memory:

"All I could see from where I stood  
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked another way,
And saw three islands in a bay ."

There was also Whitman, Byron, Keates and Shelley, Browning. . ."How do I love thee, let me count the ways?  I love thee to the heighth and bredth my soul can reach. " Poetry could pretty much consume your whole life if you let it, it is such an indelible imprint on your heart.  It did consume mine for several years.   Words that make music in your soul.

I bought plenty of those "Complete Works of_____" poetry collections, and "Famous American Poets Anthology" books.  As I would read through the pages totally enthralled, I would write comment in the margins of the pages.  Having the awe and respect I do for books this was a little unseemly, defacing a book.  But there was a reason that made sense to me at the time.  Laugh along with me now as I tell you that reason.  I thought it would be important in the future when I was a famous poet/author myself to have the youthful opinion of mine recorded for posterity.  Hah!  Oh, when I think of it now it makes me laugh out loud with the absurdity of it.  However it is not too far off the mark of how young pre teens and teens think and day dream about such things.

The box that held my own writing was filling up.  The poetry filled pages and pages and had an affect on a deep inner level.  It seemed that I was on a paradoxical and parallel course.  The part of me busy keeping everyone out of my personal heart and the part of me exploring and expanding a deep abiding love for humankind and the grave injustices that human beings suffered everywhere in our world.  My bleeding-heart really began to bleed for people I would never know personally and circumstances I would never be forced to deal with directly.

Then 1951 came along, and the Newspaper, which I read every day as an 11 year old, was filled with this:

"The U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas heard Brown's case from June 25-26, 1951. At the trial, the NAACP argued that segregated schools sent the message to black children that they were inferior to whites; therefore, the schools were inherently unequal. One of the expert witnesses, Dr. Hugh W. Speer, testified that:

"...if the colored children are denied the experience in school of associating with white children, who represent 90 percent of our national society in which these colored children must live, then the colored child's curriculum is being greatly curtailed. The Topeka curriculum or any school curriculum cannot be equal under segregation."

The Board of Education's defense was that, because segregation in Topeka and elsewhere pervaded many other aspects of life, segregated schools simply prepared black children for the segregation they would face during adulthood. The board also argued that segregated schools were not necessarily harmful to black children; great African Americans such as Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and George Washington Carver had overcome more than just segregated schools to achieve what they achieved."

In my memory I could find nothing as heart breaking as this little girl being denied attendance at a school less than a mile from her home and being forced to walk 2 or more miles through dangerous railroad switching yards to attend the "colored school."  I was as angry as I was emotionally wounded.  I could not understand what was wrong with our country.  What was wrong with the people in our country.  How could this happen in America.   It was not right.  It would never be right.  I cried tears of shame for such a thing to even be a question.

My parents could not understand what was wrong with me.  Please remember, they were a product of the early 1900's, they seldom if ever had even seen black people, let alone known any.  There were certainly not a lot of people of color around Salt Lake City.  Not excusing them, just describing where they were coming from.  When I told them why I was so upset, they began with the idea that this was an event that did not touch our lives.  And there was something inherently wrong about caring so much about national and world issues that didn't directly affect us or me personally.  I could not understand what they were talking about.  Everything in this world affects me personally.  And it was all well and good that this was not happening in my town or to someone I actually knew, but damn it, it was breaking my heart.  Such colossal inhumanity!  Then there was the part I was supposed to understand about black people, only we called them Negroes then.  Black people weren't somehow the same as white people.  They were less and you just had to understand that that was just the way things are.  My anger consumed me.  My breaking heart consumed me.  And at 11 years old I didn't have enough skills yet to make my argument properly or forcefully enough.  But the devastation I felt in their misguided and faulty beliefs brought a new barrier between us.  We would get lots of time to discuss issues like this over the ensuing years of the civil rights movement.  The day came a couple of years later when my father told me from his place of authority as father and head of the house, that there were "Good niggers and bad niggers" just as there were "Good white people and poor white trash."   I was so deeply offended by that remark that he and I never saw eye to eye on almost anything after that.  I lost any desire to be a part of his awful belief system and our relationship deteriorated quite rapidly.  My mother on the other hand was more concerned as to why something like this would cause me such deep emotional pain.  That was not right nor acceptable in her view point.  My emotions were inappropriate.  That was something she never understood about me even with all the changes our relationship went through over the years of her life.  The idea that things could affect me this deeply was just not right, in her view.  Move along, get over it, this really doesn't matter, none of our concern.  Huh, I was just too emotional for them.  Not acceptable.  Learn to control it little girl.

What I learned to do was honor it and nurture it and expand it as far as I possibly could.   This is when I began having conversations with myself about a whole lot of people that were around me.  "I swear to God, I am not from this planet.  We do not treat people in this unloving, uncaring way where I come from.  No, I cannot possibly be from this heartless place."  Great.  Now I don't feel like I even belong on the planet let alone in any family's life.

I was a very shy child.  It took me a long time to get to know others and trust that we could actually be friends or at least playmates.  At about 12 or 13 I decided I needed to understand how this friend thing worked.  Of course I went to the library to find the answers.  I found a book there, and I have no recall at all what the title of the book was, but it was exactly what I needed to know.  How to be a friend.  In order to have a friend you needed to be a friend.  That was the focus of this book.  Just the right thing at just the right time.  This was valuable information and I ate it up.  Interesting thing is it worked.  And in the Junior High School years I figured out I was a person, I was funny, and people could actually like me.  So then with my new found humor I became a "disturbing element" in the classroom.    I made one teacher so mad at me he threw the chalk board eraser at me from the front of the classroom. And it was a Roger Clemens fast ball throw, direct and accurate. Now I see, humor is power!  On to creating my stand up routine and knowing I could make people laugh. (Although it could make teachers mad)  

Did I make a mistake in not going into comedy and giving Shelley Berman, Lenny Bruce, Bill Cosby and the gang a run for their money?

Check out part VI tomorrow. . .

Originally posted to shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 05:25 PM PST.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Oh my! (4.00)
    What a peculiar child you were, shirl. You lucky thang, you. I've been ill for the past few days and have missed the last two parts. I need to go back and catch up. Good to see you still writing away. We're gonna stay those notes in the margins matter yet!
    •  Hope you are feeling better (4.00)
      now Jane.  And I think we could certainly say I was peculiar. . .some would say that I am peculiar now. That being the case, it makes me very happy to have been so successful at it.

      Notes in the margins. . .what a great title.  Thanks!

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 05:52:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Many hugs for this daily fix Shirl, (4.00)
    along with the requisite green tea.  Thanks for both the tears (I needed that) and the Hope, despite fears.

    Oh, and how I loved peppermint chiclets, in the neat cobalt blue box (along with pep-o-mint lifesavers, in the cobalt blue roll), thanks for that memory.

    Yes, many hugs to you!

    What an excellent day for an Exorcism.... Social Security THERE IS NO CRISIS!

    by DianeL on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 06:13:07 PM PST

    •  Glad you're still reading (none)
      along Diane.  Be careful of those chiclets, make sure you get the right box!

      Hugs to you too

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 06:47:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I haven't laughed that hard in a long time (4.00)
      Chicklets.  Oh man.

      Thanks so much.  You are a great storyteller.  I only hope someday I am as good.

      It's been a rough week for me and I really needed that.

      Check out my upcoming book, Growing Up Red, to be released in mid-April at iUniverse.

      by ColdFusion04 on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 06:51:10 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Then you can guess (none)
        how hard it makes me laugh every time I happen to think of it.  Talk about Karma!

        Glad that you got a good laugh.  Sorry it has been not the best week for you.  I hate to say it, but you know I just have to. . .shit happens.

        Keep laughing coldFusion, it's good for what ails you.

        "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

        by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 06:57:13 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  At the risk of hijacking your great story (4.00)
          I would like to share one from my own memory... But it's not good enough for its own diary.

          When I was about twelve-years-old, I found myself in league with a bit of a bad crowd. By suburban Red neighborhood standards, this was a gang of thugs. I was friends with a really decent kid, and he knew these other guys from school, who knew some other guys from the neighborhood, so I started to hang out by association. It's funny how that works in the `burbs. You know a few kids, and they know a few kids who can get you into all kinds of bad situations. It was Six Degrees from Kevin Bacon, Red neighborhood style.

          My friend's name was Derrick, his friend was Paul, and the thug's name was Dax. I am totally serious. The kid's real name was Dax. I'm afraid his name might invalidate the whole story since it is so stereotypical. But the facts are the facts, what can I say?

          Dax always had some kind of scheme in the works, but none of them could match the quality of the scheme he had mapped out on the first day I met him. On this particular day, Dax knew of a guy who knew a guy who had a stash of Playboy magazines in his backyard tree house. Derrick, Paul and I listened intently. Dax detailed the plan in the dirt for us, describing where the house and the tree house were in relation to the street, and where we should position the neighborhood kids so they could not see the area of the tree house. Derrick, Dax and I were to decoy, while Paul went up into the tree house and hooked the porn. Off on the bikes we would go, with porn in tow in Paul's bike basket. We would reconvene back at Paul's house, where we would put on Michael Jackson's Thriller album and grow up five years in about fifteen minutes. For twelve-year olds, it was quite a scheme.

          The four of us rode our bikes a few miles to the crime scene. Sure enough, it started off exactly according to plan. Derrick, Dax and I kept the area kids busy with tales of our neighborhood travels, while Paul disappeared into the backyard. He was gone a really long time, and finally one of the kids we were talking to became suspicious:  "Hey, where'd that other kid go?" Ummm...

          Suddenly, Paul came bolting out from behind the house, porn in tow. Only there was a problem. The kid who owned the tree house was tailing Paul by about twenty feet. "Go! Go! Go!" Paul yelled. I still remember clearly the look of fear on Paul's face. So great is the fear of a parent's wrath engrained in a Red house kid that he probably really thought he was running for his life.

          He tossed the Playboys into his bike basket, jumped on his bike and started to pedal. The other three of us took off pedaling too, and for a moment it looked like a clean get away. But then tragedy struck. Paul's bike basket crumbled under the weight of fifteen Playboy magazines, and the basket and the magazines fell in a heap on to the street.

          "Don't ever come back here, you kids!" yelled the tree-house kid as he gathered up his pile of Playboys. We laughed the whole way home.

          Check out my upcoming book, Growing Up Red, to be released in mid-April at iUniverse.

          by ColdFusion04 on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:08:00 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Cute story (4.00)
            ColdFusion, and isn't that the way so many of those "local crime syndicate" things in our youth turned out?

            Reminds me of my best friend in High School.  1958, the big scandal was D H Lawrence's, Lady Chatterley's Lover.  My girl friends dad was reading it but basically kept it locked up so she could never get a hold of it.  Further, after he read a page he ripped it out.

            There was a couch on a back porch where he would lay down and read the scandalous book.  As he would rip a page out he would drop it on the floor next to the couch.  She got herself under that couch one day and as he dropped a page, she would grab it and read it and put it back.  She was a very fast reader.

            The mental image that left me with was so funny I always thought it would be a great scene in a movie.

            "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

            by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:30:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I can totally see this scene in my head (4.00)
              The girl under the couch in my mind is Winnie Cooper, from the Wonder Years.  And she opens the crumpled papers so slowly, so her dad doesn't hear.  Then she reads really fast with a flashlight.

              Dad thinks he hears something, and he stops, furrows his brow, holds perfectly still.  Looks around.  Continues to read.  Rips another page, and tosses it on the floor.

              You're right.  That would be a great opening to a movie for that matter.  Thanks again for the stories.

              Check out my upcoming book, Growing Up Red, to be released in mid-April at iUniverse.

              by ColdFusion04 on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:48:05 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Edna (4.00)
    You would get a recommend from me just for the reference to Edna's poem.

    "Lord what fools these mortals be." Shakespeare

    by outlanddish on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:12:01 PM PST

    •  Oh, good to see (none)
      that she still has fans besides me.  I have never lost my interest in her.  Maybe in part because of observations like this one from a poetry web site:

      Avante garde? Quite. Millay was a retro versifier, but she was also a sexual free thinker, open lesbian, marched for Sacco and Vanzetti, and had decidedly feminist leanings. "Academic critics never liked her work, but she seems to be one of the great modern American poets of content, not of style," said Dana Gioia, one of the Poets Corner Electors. "No other poet of her time talks as candidly or forcefully about sexuality as Millay did. She opened up the whole area, articulated that aspect for half of humanity - and she did so in mesmerizingly beautiful language. She was not a modernist, but she was modern."

      I find her fascinating still.  Glad it conected with something in you as well.

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:35:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Lots (4.00)
        of what you write connects with me. I was not adopted, but I sorta raised myself because I was so independent. And, there was nothing I could not do if I wanted.  All someone had to say was, "girls don't do that."

        I was bored in school, but made good grades and spent a lot of time looking out the windows.  Someday someone will have to come up with a reasonable plan to engage bright students in school. Even the "honors" programs are mostly boring.

        "Lord what fools these mortals be." Shakespeare

        by outlanddish on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 09:02:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I love this story! (4.00)
    Sharing our stories makes us a community, and it makes us strong friends.  Thank you so much for sharing, Shirl.
    I was/am shy. I could never read that Emily Dickinson poem without thinking "They'd never banish me because they'll never notice that I am there."
    The urge to share stories is strong, but the dread of exposure can be just as strong.  Thank you for your bravery.

    Doing it right is what fascism is all about. -- Lynda Barry

    by pedant on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:21:11 PM PST

    •  Well (none)
      I guess I'll just have to quote Kris Kristoffersen:

      "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."  from Bobby McGee.

      The greatest thing I learned as I came to be a "kick ass old lady", is that when you set yourself free from being concerned what others might think of you, the threat of "exposure" doesn't matter to you at all .  You couldn't have done or been or thought anything any worse than anybody else.  Once you start letting all that old stuff that you are so worried about out into the light of day, you'll see it was not such a big deal after all.

      Learn to laugh at yourself and your mistakes.  It makes life a whole lot easier.

      And I agree, sharing our stories with each other is the best!  And for me, it doesn't take any bravery at all. But thanks for your thoughts.

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:44:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  You've gotta read Dabrowsky... (4.00)
    Google for Dabrowsky and "positive disintegration"  You'll find yourself.
    •  I'm off (none)
      to see the google, the wonderful google of Oz. . .because, because, because, because. . . .

      criscol made me do it.

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:48:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Okay criscol. . . (none)
      Who are you and who do you work for, really?  Part of the Schultz cartel, no doubt. You're really Lucy, aren't you. . .you with your fancy shmancy psychiatrist stand. . .I hope it is still only 5 cents.

      Oh my God!  What a hoot!!!  Never been nailed down so quickly or thuroughly in my life.  I'm a 5 for 5 er.

      Thanks!  I will make good use of that information.

      Maybe we can do a telathon for Drabowsky's Kids!
      Funny thing, as I read it I felt like I was slapped down and then lifted up to my teammates shoulder and carried off the field, the crowd cheering in the backgroud!

      Terrific bit of info.  How is it you are so damn smart, eh?
       

      "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

      by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 08:06:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of Poets and things (none)
        So it turns out our Dr Dabrowski is a poet as well

        A poem by K. Dabrowski.

        "Be greeted psychoneurotics!

        For you see sensitivity in the insensitivity of the world,
        uncertainty among the world's certainties.

        For you often feel others as you feel yourselves.

        For you feel the anxiety of the world, and
        its bottomless narrowness and self-assurance.

        For your phobia of washing your hands from the dirt of the world,
        for your fear of being locked in the world's limitations.
        for your fear of the absurdity of existence.

        For your subtlety in not telling others what you see in them.

        For your awkwardness in dealing with practical things, and
        for your practicalness in dealing with unknown things,
        for your transcendental realism and lack of everyday realism,
        for your exclusiveness and fear of losing close friends,
        for your creativity and ecstasy,
        for your maladjustment to that "which is" and adjustment to that which "ought to be",
        for your great but unutilized abilities.

        For the belated appreciation of the real value of your greatness
        which never allows the appreciation of the greatness
        of those who will come after you.

        For your being treated instead of treating others,
        for your heavenly power being forever pushed down by brutal force;
        for that which is prescient, unsaid, infinite in you.

        For the loneliness and strangeness of your ways.

        Be greeted

        * as a postscript it was noted that there is no medical condition known as psychoneurotic. . .so get out the salt.

        "Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes."

        by shirlstars on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 11:03:01 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Great diary (4.00)

    We can make the world a better place by laying them by the heels. -- Sherlock Holmes

    by Carnacki on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 09:25:31 PM PST

  •  Aw. (none)
    I got here too late to recommend. :(

    The less a politician amounts to, the more he loves the flag.

    by tryptamine on Tue Mar 29, 2005 at 06:57:55 PM PST

Click here for the mobile view of the site