Alexander Film Works

…And I Get Up Again

In Just Because... on February 16, 2012 at 3:00 pm

I have a class on Wednesday nights this semester, and there was a discussion about privilege and the costs of not having privilege.

Because of the nature of the questions, although I started at the middle of the pack, I ended up backed against the wall of the classroom, as far away from the front chalkboard and the labels signifying “privilege” as I could get.

My comment was along the lines of “Every knock’s a boost”.  The teacher was saying things about how sad and discouraging it was when you kept getting knocked down.

I replied, “Then you keep getting back up.”

She didn’t seem to get the concept.

I said, “Failure is not getting knocked down.  Failure is not getting back up when you are knocked down.”

She said something like, “It’s very discouraging when they keep knocking you down.”

This is true… but the repetitive knocking down is, in itself, a reason to keep getting back up.  My new favorite saying is, “Whatever doesn’t kill me had better start running.”  The more you mess with me, the angrier I get; the angrier I get, the easier it is for me to motivate myself back up.  And once I’m back up, you’d better watch your ass.

This is the way I was raised.  My late uncle, who was the commander of a squadron of tank destroyers in World War Two, taught me this:

Don’t start it.

If they start it, you finish it.

And that is how I’ve tried to live my life.

My wife, the daughter of TWO Marines from World War Two, learned the same lessons.

Don’t throw the first punch… just make sure you throw the LAST one.

This is how it is.

Don’t underestimate the power of anger as a motivational force.  People do things in the heat of anger that they wouldn’t (or couldn’t) do otherwise.

It may even be one of the forces that binds the Universe together… like duct tape.

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