Cinfulcinnamon's Blog

~~Would You Sell Your Soul?~~

Posted on: June 30, 2010

     My husband and I watched the movie Edge of Darkness with Mel Gibson the other night.  And enjoyed it tremendously.  And again, like I’ve said in the past…..NO ONE does pain like Mel.  Whether in the first Lethal Weapon movie where he’s standing in the water being electrocuted,  or being eviscerated in Braveheart, or even having his toes smashed in Payback.  He conveys pain like no other male actor that I’ve ever seen.  But this movie was about the pain that he kept inside after witnessing his daughters murder.  And the revenge that he enacted against the ones that killed her.  And the cost of that revenge.

     Revenge is a word that’s been kicked around lately.  It has different meanings to everyone that thinks about it.  And because of the degree that each of us thinks about it, it determines the “type or severity” of the revenge that we would enact.  When talking about murderers in the news, we can safely sit back in our lazy boys and say, “I’d blow that muthafuckers head off if he’d hurt my kids”.  And that very well could be true.  Under the right circumstances and given the opportunity to seek justice ourselves…..maybe we would.  It would be nice to think that the court system would protect us.  But we have all heard of cases that didn’t get settled  the way we would have liked.  The trouble is: sometimes we don’t have all the facts like the court or the judge or the jury may have had.  Just speaking from the sidelines with your first gut reaction doesn’t always mean that you are right.  But we are all guaranteed to have an opinion.  They truly are just like assholes.  We all have one.  Some just stink more than others.

     My question today is not so much about revenge as it is personal responsibility.  And moral judgements.  And which ones are you willing to put aside for your own convenience or pleasure.  How far would you go to ensure a good time for yourself and your friends or family.  How many of your own values would you compromise in the name of free speech or being in the spotlight as the envy of others.  And just how far would you go to sell out people who have trusted you just so you could look good or better than others.

     There are lines that all of us say we would never cross.  Some we have always had.  Others we have adopted as we’ve gotten older and experienced more of life.  Either as being part of a team, or as a parent, or owning our own business.  If you forever work for someone else, or never have any dealings with children you will mostly be self-directed.  And your references on the world will mostly focus on what you can get for yourself.  And that is fine.  With a good core belief system and the foundation of what is right and wrong you will be fine.  When you have children in your life you find out pretty quick that it REALLY is all about them.  The human baby is the most selfish creature on the earth.  From conception, they suck the nutrients out of the mother’s body and take whatever they can in order to be born healthy.  That is the way that Nature intended it.  But because the human child is born with no natural defenses, it’s up to us to protect and care for it. 

     This can put a real damper on our social lives.  Of this I am well aware.  My ex-husband only had our son in his custody during the summer months.  The rest of the time,  I was the bad guy.  And that has worked out well for us.  And although having both parents there would have been better on our son, I think he has turned out really well.  As he grew, I made choices that I thought protected him to the best of my ability.  And I will admit that a couple of times, when I thought someone was out to harm him in some way….I did some things that he may not have approved of. Whether it was living a certain place, or talking to the parents of  certain kids, or going to school and finding out things about him that I needed to know.  And at every step of his growing independence…..I was there.  He only thought that he was crossing that street on his own.  He only believed that he could rent any movie or game at the video store. And all the other things we do.  To protect our children.  I stayed home countless weekends because I had no sitter.  I turned down many dates because I didn’t want to introduce a certain kind of man to my son.  I was willing to forgo my own pleasure in order to make sure that the character that my son thought I had,  was there. 

     I had many jobs in my life.  And when you work for someone, you are subject to their rules.  And their restrictions.  I’ve also owned my own businesses and had others working for me.  But I’ve never sold myself to anyone.  They may have been able to rent my skills for 40 or more hours a week, but they never owned me.  I’ve never done anything in business or my personal life that I am ashamed of.  I’ve never justified doing anything wrong in order to make myself or my status better.

     I don’t always investigate businesses that I do buy from.  I’m not up to date on which companies do business with other third world countries.  It’s all I can do to clip coupons and stay away from bad meat and vegetables.   I know that child labor and slave labor is out there.  I want to buy only American when I can.  But sometimes price has been my determining factor in a purchase.  And I suppose this is a kind of sell out.   If I have heard about, and then investigated something that has led me to believe that a company is evil in some way, yes indeed I will go out of my way to avoid it.  And see that they don’t get any of my money.

     I wonder if people like Michael Vick had pet dogs at home.  We all know how the dogs that he liked to fight and bet on lived and died.  By the same token, I think he has paid his debt to society and deserves a second chance.  The folks that take our money should feel some responsibility to us as well.  There is trust there that a merchant should have with you.  If I hand a clerk a twenty dollar bill it used to be that they just gave me my change.  Now they use the counterfeit pen to check it.  I know in my heart that I would never give a bogus bill to any one.  But they don’t know me from Adam’s cat.  And they don’t trust me.  Because their job could be at stake if they do and I turn out to be a “bad guy”.

     Would you go into a bar and enjoy a frosty mug of beer if you knew that in the kitchen there was a little guy there that didn’t speak english, was paid poorly, worked un-godly hours and was threatened daily?  Would you enjoy that cold beer the same?  If you had a friend that you knew did the best that they  could in their job and knew they felt satisfied that they had given 100% every day  while there  and then woke up one morning to find out that the people that they worked for were taking credit for all your  friends hard work and also lying about them to everyone that would listen…..what would you do?  Suppose your friend was the one that worked in the kitchen of that bar with the frosty mug?  Now what?   You really liked going there.  And so do your friends.  You don’t want to give it up because everyone knows your name there.  Like the bar Cheers.  And you are the Norm, or the  Frazier, or Carla, or Cliff or even the bartender that owned the place, Sam. Would that beer taste as good knowing what they’d said about your friend? Would it?  And if they did other things that weren’t right or moral.  Or took advantage of the patrons and laughed all the way to the bank.   Would you help hide that knowledge?  Would you do the right thing?  Or justify their actions because it’s  “better”  for you?  How’s that beer tasting now?

     Revenge sometimes is as simple as doing what is right against something that you know is wrong.  Standing up, speaking up, speaking out.  Sacrificing your spotlight or place at the bar for someone else that can’t speak for themselves.

     I’ve never had a problem with doing what I thought was right.  Sometimes, the evil forces that try to keep me silent have tried to paint me in a bad light,  And even when I know where some of the bodies are buried, I’ve kept them buried.  But as long as I am able, I will stand by the truth.  Because in the end it will win out. 

     As I have said, I’m a 12 year veteran of the Air Force.  My husband is a Viet Nam Vet.  There is a code among the military.  One of honor. We expect more from our “kind”.  And when one of us dishonors themselves by dishonoring another military member…..we take that very seriously.  The Marines have their “Semper Fi”.  When men greet my husband they say it. When he answers back, it’s with “Do or Die”.  I grin when it happens.  But I think it’s great too.  That’s a camaraderie I’m proud to be associated with.  And it makes me feel safe too.  Wish everyone had that in their life.   Because for us….the  beer is always cold !!




1 Response to "~~Would You Sell Your Soul?~~"

I enjoyed “Edge of Darkness” as well! The Klingons say that revenge is a dish best served cold; someone else said that when planning revenge, first dig two graves. These are excellent points to always keep in mind when you know there a wrong to be righted… and it has to be done. No, I don’t think about some of the things you mentioned – I have enough to do keeping track of myself than to really worry about such things. It’s not turning a blind eye – but the further away from a problem, the less of a problem it is.

Sometimes, we have to do what has to be done no matter how messy it is because, yeah, there are lines we never cross – but someone else does and they have to be shown the error of their ways. Be cold and dig that second grave – just don’t put yourself into it.

I was in the Air Force, too! How come we don’t have cool stuff to say to each other like the Marines, Army and the Navy?

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Goofy Me

I am: an Air Force vet, Mom, sister, friend, Lifestyler, and all-around smartass with a heart of gold. I have lived all over the far East and learned many things about people and cooking, art and true value. I like to share my experience with the rest of the world. I will be the most loyal friend or most annoying enemy you've ever known. Honest to a fault. My life has not always been easy, but it has never ever been boring.

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