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Wednesday, May 22, 2019

A life well lived?

My college alumni magazine came in the mail. I may skim it, but usually it goes in the burn pile. My lovely wife happened across it and read a lot of the bios. They sounded pretty impressive.

I may have gotten my lovely wife a little mad at me . . . for reading between the lines . . . out loud. She might not have liked how I pointed out a few things. One guy had an extensive military career. It sounded good in the bio and I have to give the guy credit for serving. However, he wasn’t on the pointy end of the stick. All his assignments were basically office jobs. Those are important and essential to war fighting, but the guy never had to dodge a bullet his whole career. His bio read like he single-handedly defeated armies in hand to hand combat.

Another bio may have gotten somewhat polished up due the alum being a major donor to the college.

Of course, a bio in a magazine like that is just a slice of someone’s life focusing on the good things. There’s a certain amount of spin here. That’s fine, for what it is.

It did get me thinking. People’s lives are complicated. Few are ever all evil or all good. Some people have to overcome great trials and may become stronger for it. Others may just become broken, or jerks even. You never can tell. During the course of a long life there’s plenty of time to do good and bad things. The only people who do no wrong are people who do nothing at all.

There are things that may appear to right and correct at the time, but later on prove to be exactly the opposite.

Even as a kid I was pretty leery of heroes. Maybe I was just a cynical little snot. Maybe it’s because I saw people who were respected in the community doing mean things in private. However, it did become clear to me that I should try to become the best version of myself. It wasn’t to get standing in the community or praise from others. Trying to do your best is a gift you give yourself.



  1. Like the old saying thine ownself be true. We would all be better off remembering that, I think.

    1. It's an old saying, but a true and good one. It's simple enough, but sometimes we forget.