Can We Talk About That?

March 25, 2009

Community – Then and Now

Filed under: Blogroll,Nashville — canwetalkaboutthat @ 4:17 AM
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As a child I grew up in a small backwoods town. If you drove through it you wouldn’t even believe that we considered it a “town” and might even chuckle at the thought. We had, I think maybe about 300 people in our little town. My family lived on about a hundred acres, so our neighbors needless to say were not “just next door.”

However, everyone seemed to know each other, or at least the adults did ~aka~ the “elders” – when you were twelve years old didn’t everyone over forty or so seem old? Anyways, being a child, I didn’t know it yet but we were a community not just a little town tucked away in the backwoods.

In our little community, as it pertained to anything that happened outside of one’s home, there was none of the “that’s not my kid nor my brother, so I’m not intervening” type attitudes that we often see today. Everyone made it their business to be mindful of all the other community members, especially the younger ones; even when a new kid popped up on occasion [probably visiting, but hey they might stay] they’d keep “one good eye” on him or her too. And if one of those “young-ones” looked to be “up to something” and it didn’t seem to be settling quite right with them [the elders/wise ones] they didn’t care whose young-one it was they’d intervene in some manner or the other.

Yep, we young folks were not so fond of our noisy “elders” [at least back then that is] they always seemed to ruin our grandest of plans! They “bossed” us, even when we didn’t exactly know who they really were, they knew us often by name but when not, by parents name i.e. “That’s Jimmy Barnes kid over there throwing them there rocks.” I use Mr. Barnes kid as an example cause I’d of never been guilty of throwing rocks mind you; I might have missed my target via that method! ;-)

They were a real pain, or so we thought, with their meddling, minding our business, giving long lectures, unwanted [now known to be pearly] advice and even ratted us out to our parents sometimes! I mean really we had a most difficult time getting ourselves into much mischief in that one cart town!

Not to mention they were always picking on, I mean keeping an eye on me because I was pretty adept at mischief, usually the harmless type which they loved to laugh about, but sometimes — you know like if Mary Jane pulled her puppy’s tail, or one of the larger kids was picking on a smaller one — I was prone to get involved and had no fear calling a cease your fire command or it’s a dual with me you mean bully!

Nonetheless, if I only called for one well that might have been Okay, but those nosy elders had come to learn that I rarely backed down from my stance in defending those considered to be our weaker community citizens. Yep, I’d be ready to battle it out for sure [all seventy-five spit-fire pounds of me that is – did I mention I was also a tiny little elf looking child]. Hey, in all fairness, I did give them an option to stop being a bully; by nature I do not like strife. I’ve always strongly preferred getting along with all, peace and love over war, both – then and now. I was a determined one when it came to “justice” for the underdog though – then and still now.

Any whom – Getting on to the point – How many of us did not moan and groan earlier on that we’d never be like Mom, or Dad, or Sally Sue’s parents or so-in-so…in moments of resentment at their all knowing ways?

Nonetheless, over the years I have come to realize most every young person’s worst fear “Oh my goodness, I’ve become just like them!” Well golly, I’m more often than not, so glad that I did! 🙂

Most of the time this resemblance, to my former community elders, it’s a good thing……but sometimes — you know like when an all grown-up Mary Jane is still pulling the puppy’s tail, or when it appears that bigger people are just being outright mean bullies to little people — I can become like that twelve year old spit-fire of a girl from yesteryear; desiring to help save or defend the weak and hence find myself wanting to call the cease fire command or it’s a dual.

And thankfully, although the community has changed, even the new community has community elders around that notice when the [all be them well intending] younger folks are up to something that “doesn’t settle quite right” with them.

I’m also thankful that I’ve learned from many of them that I’m much better off seeking their experienced counsel, before I go grabbing tigers by the tail or challenging the bullies to a dual at dawn…… And am even more thankful that there are still many that have not adopted the new and growing attitude of this world – “that’s not my kid nor my brother, so I’m not getting involved or intervening” in any manner – that is as it pertains to me and my family anyways.

Yep, who’d of ever thought it – That we’d someday be grateful for the eyes, ears and even the [unmerited] advice of our concerned community, both – Then and Now.

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