Saturday, January 17, 2009

blogs. that's the joke - blogs.

What's good, Interwebs? I haven't seriously or regularly blogged in a long time, so what it takes to bring me back is the realization that I'm 24 1/2 and I'm not the person I used to be, nor am I the person I want to be. So here I am, to see if there's anything my computer can do for me in that department.
I can face facts - blogs were kind of a joke when I had one at the oh-so-enlightened age of 19. When it had been sufficiently long enough since my last post for me to point the finger and laugh at 'bloggers' without reminding people that I used to be one such ridiculous person, the internets went and changed on me again. Now it seems everyone's comfortable with online communication, webjournals, social networking sites, and support groups. Updating people on everything from the minutiae of the everyday to milestones of progress along intense personal journeys just won't get you the scorn it used to, unless you deserve it for some other reason. I'm here to see if I can break into this new old brave world and find what many others seem to find - meaningful communication.
I plan to post regarding the areas of my life I want to improve. It's not a place for me to make myself sound nicer than I am, but I also am not permitted to be unduly hard on myself. A little backstory about the method I plan to use to do this...
I teach at a Central Valley high school, and while discussing Benjamin Franklin's plan to become morally perfect by tallying up his offenses against a set of core virtues, I realized I was not one to be touting his importance. "We should all be so concerned with the state of our character, as Ben Franklin was, that we would pay such close attention to our actions" I intoned to the thirty-six impressionable children before me. And I thought, Well, if that ain't your garden variety hypocrisy, I don't know what is! I'm starting with his virtues, because I don't want to spend more time deciding on other ones if his are pretty much the same as your basic Western Philosophy fundamentals. Who am I to think I know better, right?
Here they are:
1. TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.
2. SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
3. ORDER. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
4. RESOLUTION. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.
5. FRUGALITY. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.
6. INDUSTRY. Lose no time; be always employ'd in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.
7. SINCERITY. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
8. JUSTICE. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.
9. MODERATION. Avoid extreams; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.
10. CLEANLINESS. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.
11.TRANQUILLITY. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.
12. CHASTITY. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dulness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another's peace or reputation.
13. HUMILITY. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.

This month's virtue is temperance. So we'll see how temperate I can be for the rest of this month. I'll keep some tabs on how it goes, and would love to hear from any interested.

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