hoedls haven
Where Nature is the source of all artistic expression

Tuesday, January 23, 2006

"Please, please, please, turn your socks right side out."

I can't tell you how many times I've pleaded with my nine-year-old son to do this simple task before throwing his clothes into the laundry pile. It's not that he's disobeying me on any given day; it's just not a major priority on the list of daily obligations and tasks of this young man. Just peel the socks off and throw them in the laundry pile. I should be thankful he's able to hit the laundry pile at all...

It seems true that as long as there forever remains rites of passages for children, there will remain complementary rites of passages for parents as well. In this case, it is a life-long "rite of passage" for each of us, my friend; forever to be a "right-side-outer."

What is a right-side-outer? Well, it's that person:

  • that reminds others of what is most important in this Life when Life's pace becomes harried and hurried;
  • that remembers that people will not always remember what you said, but how you made them feel;
  • that remembers the true purpose of Life's journey;
  • that places more emphasis on a person's character and less on their content;
  • that turns difficult obstacles and detours into surprising opportunities;
  • that subtlely reminds others that hurried quantity will never take the place of patient quality;

We find ourselves in a world where as long as "it's shown on television, we're not caught, and no one gets hurt," it's accepted behavior. And yet, in a world where manners have been mostly forgotten, it's the right-side-outer who remembers to say, "Thank you, please and you're welcome." And in a world where sports have become a primarily spectator obsession, it's the right-side-outer who chooses to exercise their own body rather than sit and watch others do it. And in a world where love often times is shown as simply an expression we use when stating our likes toward particular foods, it's the right-side-outer that is the simple and consistent romantic with those in his/her life.

The right-side-outer is not a freedom fighter, a saint, a diplomat or savior. He/She is simply concerned about turning Life's situations "right-side-out," the way they're supposed to be lived. To live Life in a courteous, healthy, romantic, visionary, patient and hopeful manner. It is this Life we are called to live, my friend. We could be satisfied that we're at least "hitting the laundry pile;" that societally we're not severely hurting each other... but it's not enough. We are called to turn Life's facade right-side-out and expect more from ourselves and from one another.

To live Life in a courteous, healthy, romantic, visionary, patient and hopeful manner shouldn't be asking too much. But in the meantime, I plan to continue pleading and turning those socks right-side-out.


© Copyright 2006 - All rights reserved