I’m Offended By The Offended

I am offended

I am offended by the offended!  Perhaps it’s because I’m just a (insert your particular favorite blanket insulting description here), but when did we become offended by everything?  Okay, I’m one of those “when I was a child” people because when I was a child we did all sorts of things to each other that would get us attacked by some group or another because we offended someone somehow.  We called each other names, we punched, kicked, bit, threw things at each other and yet we were still able to get along.

We spend far too much time and energy being angry, upset, pissed off, and miserable with others that we seem to have forgotten how to get along.  Getting along doesn’t mean we only do things my way or only do things your way.  Getting along means we find a way to make it work together!  We have become so lazy that we don’t even try to get along anymore, we immediately go for the lawsuit (but “it’s not about the money” that I’m going to spend on ME).  We expect everyone else to be perfect and never make a mistake or a bad judgement call, yet when we are the one in the hotseat, we just shrug it off because no one matters but ME.

We have turned into a society that’s all about ME yet scream and march about being “inclusive” yet we want to be distinctive.  We call each other horrible names and even try to kill each other all in the name of “inclusiveness”?

I can’t help but imagine what kind of society we would have if we actually did try to get along and work together.

Coffee Reflects Life?

coffee

I love coffee!  I’ll just state this tidbit right from the beginning and let it hang out there in the wind, so to speak, for a bit.  Now, whilst I do love a good cup of coffee, one simply does not get up one morning and make a good cup of coffee, except by sheer luck (or a Keurig).  I grew up drinking, what my parents and grands referred to as, “Bayou Bile.”  This is coffee which has been percolated (not “brewed” or “prepared” it MUST be “percolated”) to the point where it will stain a new cup on the first pour.  It was dark.  It was pungent.  It was strong.  And it was good!  If you’ve never had it, you have not had true coffee.

Side Note: I only had “Bayou Bile” at my Grands’ house until I joined the Army and got my first duty station.  The Mess Sergeant was from the swamps of Louisiana and made the coffee to his liking.  Those who thought it too strong would often pour half a cup then cut it with water, lots of sugar and cream.

One day, our company Chaplain came to visit with us in the Mess Hall.  We had already gotten the low down on this guy from the company clerk.  Captain Charles William Louis, IV, had quite the pedigree.  Graduated college with honors at the age of 19.  Held a Master’s from Harvard Divinity, and two Doctorates (Divinity and Theology) which he received by the time he was 25.  We had already figured out that our new Chaplain was going to be dry as mummy dust and half as interesting.  Still, he did hold the rank of Captain, so we had to respect that.  Capt. the Fourth came into the Mess Hall, took two steps inside and stopped.  He had a look of sheer ecstasy on his face.  He started sniffing the air and following a scent like a Bayou Hound.  The stronger the scent, the happier he became.  When reached the coffee, he was practically salivating.  He pour a cup of this steaming oily liquid and tossed right down his gullet without a flinch.  We were waiting on the screaming to commence but he only poured another cup, tossed it down, and smiled with his eyes closed.

It was at this moment that we actually understood that our Chaplain was an actual human being and not some fake flake that farts mothballs.  Captain Louis the Fourth sat at the enlisted table, and while he did honor the tradition that the enlisted snap to attention when an officer is near, he made a point to remind us “Officer in the area all day, at ease.”  We sat back down and kept eating whilst he began talking WITH us (not AT us).  He quickly learned our names and just had a great chat with us.  He asked us if we had any questions of him.  Corporal Jarvis piped up and said, “What is ‘Life’ to you, Sir?”  This opened the door for Chaplain Louis the Fourth to share some of his insights.

“Life,” said he, “is like this coffee.  You can follow the same recipe every single time, but the result will always be slightly different because of factors we cannot control.  For example, did you use well water, bottled water, or city water?  The water will alter the taste.  What about the age of the coffee?  That will also alter the taste.  Then each chef adds their own creative bits.  In this cup I taste a hint of vanilla.  Some I have had will have a hint of chicory or cinnamon or spice…depends on the chef.  You see, there are parts of our day that will ALWAYS be different that yesterday.  Apart from the obvious point that yesterday can NOT be changed, there will be other influences that we cannot control.  While we cannot control all the influences, we CAN control how we deal with those other influences.”

That was the first time ANYONE had taken the time to explain this to me.  And suddenly, a whole lot suddenly became clear!

 

Let’s Jump Right In, Shall We?

yes i'm an introvert

Permit me to introduce myself…I am of Scottish Descent and yet I am an Introvert.  The Scottish Heritage speaks for itself, methinks.  However, the Introvert issue should be discussed as there seems to be some generalities being believed as accurate when, in fact, they are quite inaccurate.  Let’s discuss a few, shall we?

Introverts Are Shy, Bashful, Anti-Social, and Boring. 

Shall we begin with the “Introverts Are Shy”?  I can understand how this fallacy could raise more than a few eyebrows.  Being an Introvert does, in no way, mean I am shy.  I am observant and I am cautious.  Unlike my counterparts, My Extroverted Brethren and Sisters, I am not gregarious, not am I the “life of the party.”  That is not to say that I don’t enjoy a good party, I do enjoy hoisting a few with those I have permitted within the personal boundary (they respect my quietitude), and I also enjoy a chuckle, guffaw, chortle, or gafortle if you will.  I am in no way bashful, however, as stated above, I am cautious and observant in that I do not wish to “let go” until I know with whom I will be sharing.

Then there’s the whole Antisocial and Boring aspect.  Truth be told, these are not traits whereby my words can possibly hope to change the perception of others.  However, I do admit that my need for quiet and solitude in order to recharge can be viewed as being antisocial.  I have come to realize that it is rather a rude act on my part to quietly slip away from the group in order to enter into my portable fortress of solitude (which is found within my cranium seeking to keep my ears from slapping each other). I offer my apologies to any hosts or hostesses whom I may have offended by this tendency.  My offense was not purposefully hurtful.

My profession requires quite a lot of human interaction and even with dogs, who play a huge role in my place of employment.  To be honest, I prefer the company of dogs over many humans because dogs are willing to sit with you and permit you to rub their belly whilst you enter your recharging mode.  My personal companion is a Rescue Pup who is perfectly happy sitting with me and allowing me to regain strength without having to say a word.  Okay, if more humans want me to rub their bellies, then we have broached boundaries best kept closed.

One of the activities I engage in on a regular basis is teaching several classes to the new hires.  I teach them for 2.5 hours straight and actually require them to interact with me.  I have a propensity of tossing bite sized Tootsie Rolls during class when I expect a particular new hire to engage in the discussion.  Thus, I am not antisocial I consider myself selectively social.

As an Introvert, I enjoy movies, plays, reading, coffee, beer, the occasional shot or two of Scotch, the odd cigar or pipe now and then, I enjoy many genres of music (whilst I detest some genres as well).  Being of complexion so pale that the sunlight will turn me into a scorched marshmallow doesn’t deter me from seeking the tranquility of the salt air of the sea.  Not much of a fan of dabbling in the water, though, since I know what the fish do in there (and people who don’t wish to exit for the lavatories), not to mention the things that get dumped into the waters.  I will admit to watching far too much of Shark Week and learning that the powerful and aggressive Bull Shark likes to hunt in shallow waters and is able to endure in fresh water as well.  Thus, I am content to enjoy the shore or, better yet, the outdoor Snak Shak where one can enjoy the outdoors under the shade of the shed with its appropriate ceiling fan cooling me outside, whilst an ice cold beverage of some sort cools the innards.

I trust this diatribe has been helpful, informational, and inspirational for you.  Should you wish to make inquiries, feel free.  I am an introvert who is not fearful of engaging and a healthy dialogue.

Thank you for taking the time to read and visit.  It is my hope you will feel free to return from time to time for a visit.