September 13, 2008

You Never Really Grow Up

I remember as a kid feeling frustrated because no one takes you seriously―you're just a kid, after all. And when you're nine or ten years old, you dream of the day when you're an adult. You can do big, important, grownup things. Like stay up past your bedtime. Heck, you didn't even have to have a bedtime―you can stay up as late as you want.

As a child I dreamed of being respect
ed and taken seriously when I made proclamations or observations about the world or life or the frequency of bathing that is really necessary. But among the many things they don't tell you about adulthood, one of the most disappointing is that this never happens. Once you become an “adult” (whenever that is, exactly), people do not start respecting you or treating you as an equal.

You see, we never really grow up and we never really leave high school.

I remember going to school and being baffled at the behavior and lack of respect I saw in other students. They disrespected teachers or professors by talking or sleeping class. They disrespected
pastors by reading a book during sermons. Or they disrespect each other by talking about or making fun of each other.

The only difference between adults and kids or teens is that adults are much more sly about it. They use their age or professional title as an excuse to trample over a person. Or perhaps they assume that someone else couldn't possibly make a wise decision without their input.

I guess the simplest way of explaining it is that people view you through glasses that are shaded by the amount of pride or arrogance they have. The more pride, the darker the glasses. Eventually it becomes so dark that all they can see is their own reflection in the glasses. When they can't see you for the person worthy of respect that you are, they only see their own desires.

When you have training or a degree or natural ability in something, and you try to explain an aspect of this subject to someone with dark glasses―it doesn't matter. It doesn't mat
ter that despite your low place on the totem pole of life, you actually know some things and have skills they don't. All they see is what they want to see. I guess a lot of people only need an opinion about something to consider themselves an expert.

Perhaps I was expecting too much of people when I thought they'd respect each other. Perhaps I was expecting too much of people when I thought they'd love and treat others as they want to be loved and treated.


On a completely different note, I was browsing CNN last night and thought for a second that I had gone back in time:

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