I just wanted to be a nice person. That was always my intention from that first day of school. I wanted to be friends and just play. It didn’t work out that way. I think other kids always found my friendliness unsettling and so proceeded to punch and kick me. I never fought back in those early days. I cried. It hurt to have kids jump on your feet, or punch you in the stomach or in the face. Why were they being so ugly to me.
I still get it today. Off course now it’s not cool to hit someone with a shovel. (29 years ago it was a plastic shovel, now I would just look silly hitting a squint kid with a plastic shovel) But basically I think I grew up in an odd world where my parents told me that sharing was good (which we took to mean, as take everything as the definition of share.) Taking things from people was bad and that one good turn deserved another.
I have this horrible habit of keeping a ledger of all deeds done to me and for me. For those people who make significant contributions to my life (You folks should know) I will do whatever they ask. They don’t always realise the impact they make or have made but I willingly give whatever I own to make these people happy for their contribution to my life. Moira would probably point out that I actually do it because I hate feeling obligated to someone so I over give in order to feel relieved of be debt. I don’t like owing and I hate being owed.
Maybe I was inspired by Napoleon or the Renaissance (Odd that my office building is named Renaissance which was where I landed when I came to JHB) but although I like money and I would like a whole bunch of it to become king of the world, it is not important when it comes to helping people. I try to spend freely and without grudge. But somehow I seem to always be that kid who is too friendly and pisses off people. My own brother apparently felt the yolk of living in my shadow. Yes the brother I name in my book as one of the dedications. And i put it down to hungry insecurities. My brother’s wife feeds that insecurity because she validates all that superficial crap and makes him think that is what makes a man. But then again she is about as mature as your average 5 year old.
So it comes as no surprise to find other male beings growling from shadows with their passive aggressive grunts. Oh sweet lord I am not about to usurp your life. Although my name might indicate otherwise. But it just underlines people will never be happy with what is in front of them but envy what other’s have. But recipe for everyone’s life is so different, are we that willing to walk in the footsteps of the next person in order to acquire what they have? What about what fate has gifted to us? Are we that brave to thumb our noses at her?
I find that to have and to lose is better than to have never lost at all. People are desperate. People are stupid. Temptation and envy are products of pride. When people start saying to themselves, even in the quiet darkness of solitude, why not me, why him, then you know you have given into the first sin, pride.
Dear Lord, protect my humility so that I may never treat anyone as less than I am. (Unless they’re Australian)