No doubt there are many things from my youth that I do not recall. Isn’t it strange that things like humiliation and rejection often remain vivid in our mind? I remember like it was yesterday the green corduroy pants that my mom made me wear in elementary school. I was dubbed “Mr. Greenjeans”, which for those who remember was a contemporary of Captain Kangaroo. I also recall an incident in which I found my way into the school spelling bee. There I was, unaware that most were just waiting for me to mess up, standing in front of the school awaiting my first word. I can not recount what the word was but I do know that I blew it. I can still see the smirking faces and hear the laughter that came from the student body that day. I did not know then that the truth was most of these well-wishers could not possibly have known that I missed the word before the moderator had pointed out my fault. It is moments like this that slowly beat us down from getting too far out there. I thought that I would leave that in the past but the fact is I, and most of you, still crave that one simple thing in life. We want to be liked.
Social media has put us all on display today. We tweet and paste and post with the hopes that someone will give us the thumbs up. The single most challenging thing about writing my blog is knowing that some will not like it. There are people online now, just like those young scholars from my past, who surf the web simply looking for some fault to point out. I do not understand why some people are that way but I believe it probably has to do with their own insecurities. If one should remain in mediocrity then we all should be held there. What a sad way to think.
The challenge then for all of us is simply to create. If we have something to show or say then we should put that out front just because it’s ours. This is a hard thing for me to do. I would like to tell you that I have moved on from that need for social acceptance but that just isn’t the case. The problem with that part of me, and maybe you, is that whatever we create will probably be designed with some reservation. We do not give it our all and then when we fall short we can simply shrug it off because it really wasn’t all we had anyway. A study of history will show us that those that gave us the great art and literature that stood through time were considered strange in their day. They poured it all into their work and the result was something that would last. So consider what it is that you have to contribute today and put it out there. If I don’t like it then what do you care. I’m just a kid in green britches that can’t spell.