The Power of Association
One pearl of adolescent wisdom that he sowed among my middle aged furrows of bigotry is that it did not matter how he dressed, nor did it matter much how he and his friends behaved, as long as they were law abiding citizens. Thankfully he never went for the gangsta sag look, I would have never allowed that. Connor was too much of an individual anyway. He was more of a Goodwill store "I don't care" type who saw clothing as the malicious trappings of a society that judges on appearances. He viewed the clothing industry as a cog in a vast hidden machine of systematic mind control.
Recently, he has spent several weeks in Paris. Not Paris Texas, but rather that other Paris, where all those Frenchmen run around. He has decided to leave his job teaching applied mathematics at a major state university. He is joining an international corporation that uses mathematics to somehow determine where to drill for........oil. ....... Ah, Capitalism......Good old Capitalism. When a young man finds the girl he loves and decides to settle down, there's nothing like having a few greenbacks in your pocket instead of a bunch of philosophy in your head.
Connor called me to enlist my assistance on his resume and to garner some advice on what to wear to his interview. Shave off facial hair for the interview? Darned right. Get a Republican haircut. I'm rather proud that he didn't ask whether he should wear shoes or sandals. Instead, he asked what type of shoes, and if he really needed a tie. I informed him of my opinion. My son is approaching wisdom, not because he now understands why he needs a good paying job, and why he needs to act and dress appropriately to obtain it, but because he now knows that there is much that he does not know.......Without the knowledge of one's ignorance, the search for enlightenment will never be undertaken.
This afternoon, as I was re-photographing a small revolver, I thought about that......How much the trappings of our personal personae affect how others perceive us, and ultimately the direction our lives take.
I thought about my own choices, the one time artistic prodigy who enlisted in the US Navy, sailed the world, who became a rabid imperialistic Republican expansionist, and then left to become a nurse. The guy who now sports a French forked Balbo and rides a bike to work. The guy who advocates for the care of those who do not speak for themselves.
I thought about the son who has gone from voting for Al Gore and saving the rain forests from the horrors of human indifference, to a burgeoning Capitalist ready to do some expansion of his own.
Yep. That's my son. I'm proud of him. I hope he's proud of me too.