Sometimes it’s OK to get emotional about things that make no sense. Every now and then you need to allow yourself, and the people you care about, to be irrational. My children will be angry about this opening line, because my general modus operandi with them has been, “I don’t nurture irrational behavior.” However, that specific M.O. was a teaching strategy, so as not to raise self-centered, self-absorbed, psychopathic, participation trophy gathering, divas. (I think it may have worked, we’ll see. Those two books are still being written.)
But when dealing with a loved one, a friend, or anyone for that matter…it’s critical to have an understanding that while you may think Chevy Van is the cheesiest, stupidest, pop song of all time, they may have lost their innocence in an actual Chevy van, and that song may evoke a beautiful memory, and that memory may bring a tear. Offer a hug, and let it be…it costs you nothing.
Always open doors for people. Men for women, women for men, men for men, anybody for everybody. It’s just nice, and in a world where hateful and crazy people get all the press, this little act of courtesy and kindness sends a subtle message out to the universe that most of us are good and kind. Acts of kindness and grace are the best way to teach kindness and grace. And when you’ve held the door for several people, and someone grabs the door, and tells you to, “Go ahead…” allow them their opportunity to be kind as well.
Never make a scene at a wedding…especially if it’s not your wedding. Don’t argue with your spouse, date, or table mates. Don’t get drunk and loud and stupid (well…stupid anyway). The bride has been dreaming of this day since she was old enough to dream, and the parents of the couple have just spent a TON of cash, don’t be the reason things weren’t awesome. I just went to 2 weddings that were amazing. Now I want them all to be amazing. If I have to explain this any further, please cancel your subscription to The Large Man Chronicles.
Sometimes commercials are better than the shows they are sponsoring. Insurance commercials seem to have replaced beer commercials for entertainment value. Flo, the Gecko, Mayhem, the Farmer’s guy…each character seems better than the next in that trade.
BUT, there is at least one exception: Dos Equis’, World’s Most Interesting Man. That spot is the best. Everything I’ve ever written (and ever will write) is completely subjective – except for my opinion on the World’s Most Interesting Man. You could make a movie out of that character.
Always lean towards forgiveness. The weight of a grudge is most certainly heavier for the one who carries it.
Never give me frozen yogurt as a substitute for ice cream.
Sometimes it’s okay to stay put.
Always kiss with your eyes closed.
Never kiss with your eyes open.
Sometimes people you love will disappoint you and let you down. You can still love them. But don’t let that love bring you down too. This is a tough one.
Always remember that rules and statistics and facts and figures about people are based on the average, but no individual whom you interact with is “average”. Don’t use a cookie cutter approach when dealing with people – we’re all unique, like snowflakes. Every boss, every teacher, every coach, every doctor, and every mentor, needs to have that sentence coded into their DNA, or at least have it printed on all their letterhead. (After paying the appropriate royalty fees to me, of course)
Never doubt the positive effects of charity. Be as charitable as you can be, and then do a little more. But don’t put all of your hope there. Charity treats the symptoms, it rarely cures the disease. I’m not sure why that is. If you have an example to the contrary, please share it with me. I would love that. But still, don’t give till it hurts, give till it feels good.
Sometimes I want to pinch myself when I consider all the awesome and amazing women I have around me. I would like to pinch them too, but I don’t objectify women – because my daughter says I shouldn’t. I really like the ladies though, probably because I grew up with, and in close proximity to, really strong, smart, and pretty, women and girls. Lucky me.
Always trust your gut. Unless you have a history of making really bad decisions. Then don’t. If you have a history of bad decisions, seek the council of someone who loves you, cares about you, or has nothing to gain by seeing you fail. Don’t seek the council of people who don’t have your best interests at heart. AND PLEASE … don’t pretend you don’t know the difference. You know.
Never give up on yourself. That’s like the worst thing you can do.
Sometimes I hit the repeat button, if a repeat button is available, when I’m listening to Stairway to Heaven.
Always listen to Stairway to Heaven when it comes on the radio.
Never change the station when Stairway comes on.
Sometimes …by Brittany Spears, may be the dumbest song of all time.
Always …is a great song by Stevie Wonder from Songs in the Key of Life.
Never…is a pretty crappy song by Heart. I’m not sure what album it’s on.
Sometimes the grass actually is greener on the other side. Just like a pretty girl, a toasty autumn campfire, and a roaring waterfall, an opportunity is usually worth taking a look at.
Always avoid ending a sentence with a preposition, like I just did with the previous point.
Never let arbitrary grammatical rules get in the way of making an important point.
Sometimes it’s OK to quit. Sometimes; but please apply common sense here… pretty please.
It’s always good to quit doing harmful things to yourself, like smoking, or drinking, or playing the banjo. It’s never good to quit learning, or growing emotionally and spiritually, or to quit playing the guitar.
All I’m saying is that sometimes…when you’ve exhausted every option, and your endeavor is only causing pain, maybe it’s okay to walk away. If your job pays you a buttload of money, but you wake up every morning and then go home every evening hating every minute of every hour in between; stop doing it…quit. If any relationship is unhealthy, has been unhealthy, and has no hope of ever being healthy; stop.
Sometimes we force ourselves to stay put and stick it out in bad situations for reasons we can’t even identify. We do it for a sense of duty, or an allegiance to a standard of living that we don’t even understand, probably put there by someone we don’t even know. Adhering to a code of behavior that serves no purpose to you or your loved ones…well…it serves no purpose.
Wanna know why? Okay…here’s why:
If we’re lucky, we’ll live about 90 years. Also, if we’re lucky, we’ll need to spend one third of that time sleeping. You gotta sleep, and 8 hours of sleep a day is good for us. Most of us will spend one third of those 90 years working, and even the very best jobs in the world are still work. So that just leaves one third of your life to do fun things…to eat steaks, to build campfires, to go skiing, to love your wife or your girlfriend or your boyfriend or your neighbor, or your neighbor’s wife or girlfriend or boyfriend. You only get 1/3 of your life to make homemade ice cream, to watch James Bond movies, or all these new Marvel Avenger flicks…to see the Rocky Mountains or the Grand Canyon, or Wicked on Broadway, or Clint Black in Warren PA, or Earth Wind & Fire at Red Rocks…to cuddle with babies or puppies…or to watch baseball. Only 33.3 % of your life can be spent playing hide-and-go-seek, or ding-dong ditch (ringing doorbells and running away), or building model cars or airplanes.
You only get one third of this life to just sit and stare at the ocean. ONE THIRD! Shrimpin’ boat captains get more ocean time, but you know what I’m saying.
If you are lucky enough to live to be 90, after sleeping and working, you only get 30 years for fun. Sometimes, it’s OK to quit things that aren’t fun…sometimes we should dare to be happy.
Always share The Large Man Chronicles on as many social media outlets that will support the format. Facebook is a good one. If you want to tell me how much you love it, post it on Facebook. If you want to tell me how much it sucks, send me an email at email@example.com …. Nah…I’m just kidding, you can say it sucks on Facebook too. I enjoy having my soul crushed in a public forum.
Never get in a car driven by someone you don’t know if they have tattoos on their face, or drink milk more than a week past its expiration date, or ask a woman if she’s pregnant, or fight with your mother, or go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line, or think that I don’t appreciate your attention to these Chronicles I love to write.
I think that’s it…