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Contradictions: Inevitable and Necessary

Essay By: Bill Rayburn
Memoir


A look at how contradictions are not only inevitable when leading an examined life, they are often welcome. (approx. 730 words)


Submitted:Apr 4, 2012    Reads: 36    Comments: 0    Likes: 0   


Contradictions

In any person of complexity, contradictions are inevitable. Steadfastly consistent people tend to bore me to tears.

Women, for example. One day you're beautiful, the next day you look in the mirror and say, "WTF, what is William Shatner doing in my bathroom?" But, that day when you're feelin' it; that day when you're rockin' the sundress, thinkin' as you step out the door, "Girl, they will be buildin' a front porch on Fifth Avenue when they see MY swing. Carrie Bradshaw got nothin' on this booty". You know those days, when you stuff your inner Gloria Steinem back into the folds and look forward to the wolf whistles and the leering.

That's a contradiction. And not in a bad way. It's reality.

Behold the following, courtesy of one of my favorite authors, Robert Fulghum:

"Look before you leap

He who hesitates is lost

Two heads are better than one

If you want something done right, do it yourself

Nothing ventured, nothing gained

Better safe than sorry

Out of sight, out of mind

Absence makes the heart grow fonder

You can't tell a book by its cover

Clothes make the man

Many hands make light work

Too many cooks spoil the broth

You can't teach an old dog new tricks

It's never too late to learn

Never sweat the small stuff

God is in the details"

And Fulghum continues: "Once I got so caught up in this kind of thinking that I wore two buttons on my smock when I was teaching art. One said "Trust me, I'm a teacher." The other replied: "Question Authority."

Makes you think, doesn't it. Very rarely in life is there only one way to skin a cat. Coins are two sided for a reason. Those that consider alternatives to assumed premises are known as wise, in my book. I wish I could do it more often. I know I try.

So, here are some of what I consider to be my contradictions.

I am totally pro-choice across the board on issues of humanity.

But.

I am fervently pro gun control. Automatic weapons for citizens? Really? For hunting? Really?…yet….

I am pro-death penalty.

Why? Because I am convinced, simply, that there are some evil motherfuckers out there, unfixable sociopaths, who don't even deserve a cot and 3 squares, and maybe even a better basic cable package than I have. (My spell check came up questioning 'motherfuckers'…I added it to dictionary ;=]) Rehabilitation, in our current prison system, is a joke. For every valiant mentoring effort by the likes of good souls such as Richard ****, there are 2000 recidivist assholes once again preying on good people, roaming our streets.

I hate misogyny and sexism in all its forms. Yet…

I am a shameless flirt and REALLY love when I make a woman blush. Words like tits and ass find their way into my speech, my writing, and my mind…hell, everywhere, all the time. Just visit the Gentleman's Club sometime. We may come across as troglodytic Neanderthals constantly scratching our own hairy ass and searching valiantly for our Paleolithic side, but the women who share our bar know better. We love women unconditionally. We are not objectifying them, just using some blue language to compliment their form, their carriage, and their courage. And they (mostly) love it.

I hate (irony intended) homophobia in all its forms….yet

I know that I have sought out the likes of Neo**** to better balance my own opinion of myself by including people of different walks of life…it's not homophobia on my part, but in her perfect world, Neoma would probably prefer that I like her because of the content of her character, rather than her sexual proclivities. I am simply unable to separate the two.

I hate racism in all its forms…yet

I have done the exact same thing with the black people in my life; included them, at least initially, for their blackness. Again, I cannot pretend someone is not black. Our eyes have direct conduits to our brain, and register things quicker than almost any other sense. That's why I try, almost immediately; to defuse the color/race issue with any black person I interact with. I have been highly successful, and it has paid off in spades (JOKE ALERT!!!).

"Contradiction" gets a bad rap sometimes.

Let's demystify the word.

(**** names changed for reasons of privacy)





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