Last month I brought home a brand new fresh-out-the-box minty green scooter. It is a vision to behold! This is my sole means of transportation (through the summer at least) and since it's purchase I've been joyfully zipping around Utah Valley. Besides being a daily amusement park ride, it's also very practical. I know, I know - How? The thing is this - I work about fifteen blocks away from where I live. Plus it's springtime, plus it's ultra fuel efficient.
This last Saturday I returned Children of Men to the McDonald's Redbox near my apartment and as I was driving away, I looked in the window of the restaurant to see about 8 college-aged Asian girls staring at me with smiles on their faces. I waved, they waved back. At first I thought "Wow, they are mesmerized by my charm" Then I thought better - "I'm a 300 lb man with hair like Shirley Temple wearing a tan corduroy jacket and a Jem-and-The-Holograms'-pink scarf who is maneuvering, with great agility I might add, through the maze of cars in the parking lot. They're probably looking at that."
It made me wonder, is that who I am? Am I this guy who just rides around smiling and waving to people he passes? In the bigger sense, am I nothing more than a jester to the majority of people who know me? Maybe. Probably. I mean, people who are best known for a certain attribute are best known as the person with that certain attribute. Who is Bill Gates? A smart rich guy. Who is Corky? A great actor who happens to also have down syndrome. Who is Bruce Boxleitner? I don't know... but I think he played Tron in Tron.
Anyway, though being a "funny guy" (there's got to be a better term) may be a part of what I am, that's not who I am. A few know who I truly am. As most, I'm sure, I don't feel comfortable sharing my "true" self with just anyone, though when I do interact with others I do (usually) give them a "best" version of me.
I've heard that what you do defines "who" you are. (Boy, I sure use a lot of quotation marks)(and parenthesis). I believe, that some things are just a part of you, regardless of intent. For example, I'm devastatingly handsome. (wasn't that funny how instead of a real example I gave a self indulgent one? By the way it's not a given because I've worked hard to look like this)
But really, we are human beings regardless of what we do. (Any other type beings reading this blog, just insert your species when I say "human") an ant is an ant. A bird is a bird. A horse is a horse. (Of course of course you saw it coming - who didn't?)
Since I'm on a "waxing-philosophical" roll, I'll pose another question - have those people, who are, say, killers or gymnasts, always been those types of people? Or do they have to take some one's life or do whatever gymnasts do before they gain the title? Am I an artist only as far as I produce art? Is wind wind only when it blows? I also wonder how a legacy plays into what a person is. Will Hitler, for instance, always be a killer? Will air that no longer blows always be considered wind? I guess perception comes into play here - but who is the perceiver whose perception matters? I myself would not consider air wind, but I think of Hitler as a mass murderer- at least he was. My intention is not to defend the atrocities of that evil man, but can man ever change? A bird who wears pants and a fake mustache is not a human [Martian] but is a bird doing human-like things. (Name one human who doesn't wear pants and a false 'stache - I didn't think so)
My head hurts, so I'll retire for the eve.
One final one: When I'm sleeping will I be a sleeper or just a person who sleeps? (Take that one to the mint and cash it.)