Sam Pandolfo | Wednesday, April 12, 2006
I’m 22 years old, and even though I don’t act like it 90 percent of the time I’ve always managed to see things for what they are. I tend to be laid back, level headed, and unaffected by stress.
This is not magic, its maturity. (If you know me, you’re laughing, but please read on)
Now what does maturity have to do with anything? It’s college right? Yeah, college, the place where we can pretty much do whatever we want (before 2 a.m.) while developing into responsible, young adults who will get jobs, raise families and contribute at least $50 a year to stay eligible for football tickets.
I digress. My point is we’re all supposed to be mindful of our surroundings as we tumble around in the lottery barrel of life waiting for our time to be plucked out of our drunken stupor and placed into the real world.
Today, I’m asking you all to think about where you are as we approach that moment.
I’ve read countless Viewpoints and entertained hundreds of conversations full of complaints about other people’s actions and thoughts. I’ve even written some and done some complaining myself.
What bothers me the most is the continual disregard for originality and creativity. By today’s standards of political correctness, we can’t even go into a bathroom without offending someone.
Think about it for a second. No one can really do anything without offending someone. Politics, university life, sports, love, eating, dating, sleeping, having sex, driving a car, making a joke or drawing a comic – it doesn’t matter what you do in life, someone, somewhere is going to be offended by it to the point that they demand that you stop.
Here’s the crazy part. All of these things that we do, that may offend someone, are what makes life real. These are the things that we’re passionate about doing, and at the end of the day you have to be confident enough to tune out objection and do what you love doing. You have to be yourself.
Don’t confuse my stance with hedonism, there are always lines that shouldn’t be crossed and things that will always be wrong. My point is, let things greater than people and societies determine what you will or won’t do. Everyone has a different reason for getting up every morning – be it faith, love, humor, work – and no one can tell you that it’s a bad reason.
There may be a trick to this kind of maturity after all. It’s some weird combination of confidence and fear reinforced by people and things that you value. So do whatever you want, but when you have to grow up remember that it’s quite possible the person next to you got up today for an entirely different reason and it isn’t your role to judge.