Well, I’m off on vacation. Shakespeare said “wherever you go, there you are”. It was either Shakespeare who said that or Mark Twain, one of the two. Those guys always had something to say about everything. Which is as it should be*.
It’s good to speak up. Let people know what you think. Your ideas are just as good as the next guy’s (unless the next guy is Shakespeare or Twain, in which case just go ahead and keep your mouth shut). Too often we worry about speaking our minds; will we sound foolish? will we offend? are we smart enough?
The other day I was having a nice conversation when suddenly the whole thing took a sharp turn for the worse. A “controversial” issue came up. Disaster was about to strike – we disagreed, were on opposite sides of the fence, had a parting of the minds, were not on common ground. This wasn’t just any controversial issue, it was a really important one, or at least I think so. I wanted to jump in, challenge her view, ask her to consider adding another perspective, delve a little deeper. But I just let the moment pass and the conversation moved on.
Can you change someone’s mind, once they have seen the light of one side? Is the sun dark on the side we don’t see?
I was worried about offending, but I was also worried about being able to hold up my end. These things always seem to devolve into sword fights with scores racked up for nicking the opposing side with its most extreme half-truths. Half-truths are the worst kind of truths. I’m no good at that kind of thing. I’m more of a “Huh. Well, here’s some literature you may want to look at, if you have a moment” kind of thing.
I’m sure Shakespeare or Mark Twain wouldn’t have a problem speaking up. They probably always knew exactly what to say, with a quick “no question, you aint!“ or a sharp “no, you’re the bum“. Rapier wit. My wit is pillow fight wit.
I guess I still have a lot to learn. Maybe I’ll take those two on vacation with me. That way, even though I’ll still be there, at least they will be also, and we might make an interesting threesome.
*OK, maybe neither of them said it. I can’t even remember where I heard it. It might just be a generic phrase that everybody said at some point. Anyway, that’s not what we’re really talking about here. Get back to the main paragraph!