Authors, Entrepreneurs, and other Creative Individuals Pursuing Their Dreams
A youthful Texan walked onto the campus at Yale wearing faded denim pants, tall brown cowboy boots, a red and blue plaid shirt with rolled up sleeves, a bolo tie and a tan cowboy hat. His stride was long but relaxed as he traveled, a man in search of direction. Comfortable in being himself, he wore a casual smile on his wind-burned face.
Approaching him was a semi-scowling preppie in buff chino boots, burgundy corduroy slacks under a camel sport coat. His silk shirt of a lighter reddish shade to blend with the pants was offset by a fluffy white ascot. Topping off his casual daytime wear was a black beret, tastefully tilted to the right.
The smiling Texan slowed as he neared the Yalie and asked in a slow drawl, “Pardon me, buddy. C’n ya’ll tell me where the library is at?”
The preppie stopped. Gawked. Shook his head in disdain as he blistered the cattleman’s son with a scorching glare. “I might’ve known some denizen of an institution of lower learning such as you would appear to darken my day in a manner just as you have done. Will you … if same is possible, with what is clearly a most limited intelligence … ask your question again, this time ending the sentence without using a preposition?”
Finished with his besmirchment of the ignorant cowboy, the preppie impatiently tapped the toe of his tan chino boot and waited.
Removing the hat with his right hand, running the lean fingers of a long, muscular hand through three-inch brown hair to smooth it back, the tall man from the Lone Star state cleared his throat and rephrased the inquiry. “Pardon me. C’n ya’ll tell me where the library is at … asshole?”
Just because we may “know better” than someone else, or have an education the other person has yet to receive, does not place us at a level above him or her. Further, the preppie in the above example chose to make it a battle of wits, assuming his opponent was unarmed. In doing so, he violated a principle well known to those who’ve done battle in the streets.
Never take a knife to a gunfight.
The next person you encounter, and the one after that, and the one after that, as well as all those to follow, may very well not be what you think you see. Appearance is not the be-all, end-all. If it was, Lindsay Lohan, Brittney Spears and Paris Hilton would be people we admire instead of idiots on display to the world.
Stop and spend 2-3 minutes in pleasant conversation with the next homeless person you run across. See if there’s not more to him or her than meets the eye. If you want to fork over five or ten bucks to help out, as well as pay for the “lesson”, that’d be nice, too. Still, either way, share a few words. See if, just by chance, Bill might have some vague idea of what he’s talking about.
I’m just sayin’.
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