Sunday, March 30, 2008

Here's what they think about you.

I think so of you may be confused. I'm simply a young black male who can constructively speak his mind, I never said I was Earl Monroe (Black Jesus, in the likely event that that one went over your head). I'm not here to save you all and I'm not running out to engage complete strangers in debates about every issue under the sun. I am standoffish and at times, even anti-social. I don't open up and share my feelings on the spot to just anyone, anywhere (what do you think this blog is for after all?) I don't trust many people because the people who are supposed to have my best interests at heart and want the best for me, don't. Everyone out here pretty much has the same goals in mind (money, hoes and clothes), they just have different means and methods at their disposal in order to arrive at this destination and I don't mean to alarm you but I'm no different. My weapon is just a pen rather than a Glock. There are times when I can't rely on anyone, including myself. I hate my emotions and I wish I could do something to separate myself from them, I find that they impede my progress. I don't smile very often...There's nothing nice to smile about.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.

I constantly catch myself thinking about my virtues, as well as my vices, and debating whether or not I am a "good" person. But what makes a good person? And who is it up to to decide who is good or not? And what in the hell gives them that right? I know that what constitutes good to me is different than that of the person next to me but virtues aren't open for discussion or interpretation, you either possess them or you don't. However, being virtuous has nothing to do with your genetic makeup and everything to do with how you were raised and the environment you find yourself in. You cannot teach people a virtue by requiring them to read books about it. You can only teach a virtue by calling upon people to exercise it. Virtue is not an innate property of character; it is an attribute of behavior and the only reward of virtue is virtue. In order to have a friend, you must be a friend.
Corinthians 13:11

When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put my childish ways behind me.

I don't think that there are any other words that better describe my coming of age and parth to manhood than these. I don't remember much about my childhood but I do recall the "learning experiences" I embarked upon (In other words, every time I fucked up). Most of these missteps and miscues were the result of inexperience and naiverty on my part and I learned most of my lessons the hard way but I'm a better person for it. You may say that not trusting people is not the most endearing personality trait to possess but I've managed to stick around by not putting my faith in people and letting time dictate what kind of role certain people will play in the movie that is life (you honestly couldn't write some of the shit I've seen). What I mean by that is take the time to figure people out (because it's not rocket science), observe how they treat you and the people around them and watch how they act under and react to, pressure. I honestly and whole-heartedly believe that last one is the ultimate telltale way to find out details about someone that words could never reveal. I would be lying if I said that I didn't sometimes miss the simplicity of childhood but it's too late to go back nor would I want to, I'm having too much fun without knowing what's coming up around the corner. Oh, and I almost forgot to address something off-topic but relevant to this conversation. A lot of people who read what I offer in this space think I'm cold-hearted and go around saying as much. I would like to remind them while true, you don't even know the half of it...You haven't even factored in the wind chill.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Survival ≠ Strength

I don't know if people have been listening to too much Kanye West or what, but simply showing up and sticking around does not make you harder, better, faster and it certainly does not make you stronger. Overcoming obstacles and persevering through the hardships life throws at you is definitely something to be proud of and by all means, you SHOULD pride yourself on it to the fullest but do not mistake that for empowerment. It takes a lot more than just withstanding a challenge to grow as a person. In face, if you do not learn from the mistakes that cause the strife in your life in the first place, you'll end up taking more steps backward than forward. I've always said that the hardships and obstacles encountered each and every day are life's way of testing us, finding out what we're made of and seeing if we'll crack under the pressure. However, although these tests are, for the most part, inevitable, there are many challenges that are preventable or even avoidable altogether. On top of that, it is absolutely inexcusable to allow the same mistakes to repeat themselves and cause the same setbacks. Yes, everyone makes mistakes but only a fool makes the same mistake twice. To effectively grow as a person, you must look back at what you've done wrong and identify what you could have done differently. Without evaluating situations, you cannot take any information from the scenario and no matter how many times you'll get burned, you'll keep doing the same over and over again. You must adjust and adapt in order to advance. Don't for a second think that just because you've had a rough ride in life and you managed to stick it out and hang around means that you're any better than you were before. Simply showing up doesn't mean shit.