Many folks know me and are friends and or family. But more and more of you have picked up on my little blog and might not know me so much. So, before I get into the Raton Chronicles, I just wanted to fill the new folks in on who I am.
Common Sense: There is a basic ability in everybody to see, understand, and judge common things which are reasonably expected to be shared by all, without the need for argument or debate.
Growing up I was constantly told I lacked common sense. Which I took to be a short coming on my part and yet another thing that set me apart from everyone else. Book smart isn’t street smart is another phrase that got tossed at me quite often. But hey I’ve always loved books. The thoughts and ideas on paper just seemed to flow off the pages and appear in my imagination with such clarity, it was as if I had written them myself. Books of science and exploration had a cadence and flow that best match the pulse of my curiosity and I devoured everything I could read. Half my youth was spent with my nose in a book and I learned to embraced the categorization I was given. My sense is not common. It is actually quite uncommon and Uncommon Sense is a gift and not a short coming.
Education: The knowledge, skill, and understanding that you get from attending a school, college, or university. -webster
Over the years, I’ve had a rather varied learning curve. It had its fair share of bumps and detours. What began my higher education soiree with an acceptance letter to SMU for the Architectural program turned into Engineering Technologies when SMU turned into UMass Dartmouth and the Architectural program was suddenly turned into no longer offered. I quickly learned to roll with the punches and found myself designing and building sets for the Theatre Company in order to satisfy my desire to build things. This little bump in the road more than any other has had the most profound effect on me.
Adapt and excel: If the road ahead doesn’t lead you to where you want to go, than get off the road. Just because you’re making good time is no reason to stay on something that isn’t taking you where you want to go.
The UMass Dartmouth Theatre Company gave me an opportunity to learn and do so much. From scenic construction, to rigging, to lighting design, to stage management, to technical direction, to acting, to directing; I experienced it all. The only thing holding me back was actual classes. I spent more time in the theater than I did in class. When ever I needed to understand or learn something new, I found it was easier for me to research it and read about it than sit in a classroom. Books were my friend and the information leap off the pages and quickly materialized into practical knowledge that I could immediately apply. The director of the Theatre Company was my mentor and an endless source of knowledgeable experience. He nurtured my non-traditional method of learning and called it Autodidacticism. I applaud Angus Bailey for seeing the potential in me and giving me an outlet to understand the full extent of my skills. Next to my father, Angus was the greatest influence that shaped the understanding of what I can do.
Polymath: A person whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas and can draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems.
In the world of today, everything is about specialization. You get a degree, and then you get certified, and then you become specialized, and then you make a lot of money (caveat being, you also have a lot of debt). The concept of an everyman is considered a relic. To be good at many things, likens you to a janitor or a handyman. Multiple skill sets are not necessarily seen as beneficial. This seems specially true in a business or corporate environment where been good at many things has the stigma of not being great at any one thing. I propose that one can be great at many good things.
Opportunity: There exist limitless opportunities in every industry. Where there is an open mind, there will always be a frontier. – charles kettering
After many years of giving it all we’ve got, my family and I have decided to downsize and pursue opportunity rather than wait for it to come around. We’ve lived on the East Coast our whole lives. We’re New Englanders and when I was a kid we were called Yankees and damn proud of it. All a Yankee needed was a plot of land and he could build his dreams. Somewhere along the line, building dreams became buying dreams, and the American dream became more about accumulation than quality. I want to build my dreams and this move to the West is a move to a frontier where being great at many good things is valued.
Family: (Adjective) Designed to be suitable for children as well as adults. – google
My son is bright and quick and good nature’d. And he has no opportunity to excel in the local school system. Where we have been living, the only way he can get the education he needs, is if we buy it. And we can’t afford it. And that hurts. Folks have told us how wrong we, are and how there are scholarships for smart kids, and how we can do things to push him along. But he doesn’t need pushing. And we’re doing everything we possible can. Have done more than humanly possible and it’s still not enough. Not enough here, where we’ve been. But I seen that here is not the norm. Here is an island in the continental United States and this move will have more opportunity for him. Because learning isn’t just about passing. It’s about knowing and understanding.
Less is More: We burden ourselves with possessions, when all we really need is each other.
So this is a bit of journey, I am taking with my Family, to try and lesson our dependence on things; and improve our relationship with others. Together we will learn as go and as we grow. The land will be our teacher and the road will be home (for a while). We will look for the people and the ideas that make this Country great. And I hope, live a bit more simpler life, outside of the pressures of a disposable economy and inside the heart of America.
That’s all for now. Next week Raton!