I got to hear her describe herself many times, with slightly different variations.
I confess to getting becoming impatient at one point. It may have set the pattern for how we resolve issues. The following interaction is a slightly one-sided recounting of the conversation.
|Both Mrs ERJ and I were younger then|
"Princess, you sound like a ditzy blonde when you tell my friends why you are a vegetarian." I said.
Mrs ERJ responded, "Why does it matter to you why I am a vegetarian? It is my choice and those are my reasons."
I said, "You give a lot of daffy sounding ideas that may be intriguing but those are not the reasons you are a vegetarian. You would still be a vegetarian even if the ratio of your height to the length of your colon was the same as that of a tiger rather than the same ratio as a zebra."
Mrs ERJ said, "I still don't see why it matters to you."
I thought about that for a few miles (we were driving somewhere).
I finally said, "It is a self-awareness thing. Also, it is me trying to figure out who you are. In listening to you, really listening, the reason you are a vegetarian is because you feel better when you eat that way. You feel lighter, quicker on your feet and more mentally agile. Nobody can argue with how you feel."
When asked why I wallow in "red-neck" and traditional skills am am just as guilty as Mrs ERJ was in dissembling. I give many partial answers, often modified based on who I think is in the audience.
The real reason I practice traditional "red-neck" skills is because it makes me feel good.
The first line of the Bible reads: "In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth."
Then, 25 lines later it reads: "Then God said: Let us make human beings in our image, after our likeness. Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the tame animals, all the wild animals, and all the creatures that crawl on the earth"
So the first verb, the primal verb, associated with God is "create". The first description associated with humans in the Bible are "created in the image and likeness of God".
We were created to create.
We were created to have dominion over creation.
The divinely inspired Word of God described a Red-Neck with a fishing rod in one hand and a shotgun in the other; a roll of duct tape and a sack of seeds on the floorboard of the pickup truck.
We function best when we sit in our rightful place at the table. We are happy. We are fulfilled. We feel good.
We were not created to be "consumers" We were created to make things.
That is why I do what I do. That is why I am who I am. I create.