Daze of My Life: Prose and Con
Daze of My Life
Prose and Con
As a September-born Libra; sign of the scales, life in balance, even tempered; yada, yada, yada; I weigh the consequences of my actions way before I actually act on them. As such, spontaneity is not exactly my strong suit; in fact, at my present age - and weight - I don't think I even own a suit, well, one that fits, anyway, but that's another story, make that column, or two - or ten for that matter - as you regular readers might recall. And it does matter, because it doesn't appear, that as I age, I'm going to get thinner - or healthier - or younger, either. These are the facts, now I just have to deal with the feelings.
As a coworker said to me, "I like sausage and biscuits in the morning but I like my health better," so out goes the trans fat, high cholesterol-type diet and down goes the weight and the high blood pressure. It doesn't take a genius to realize that there are just as many consequences to inaction as there are to action. And given the nature of my inaction, my lack of spontaneity might actually help rather than hinder my future behavior, seeing as how I don't have to do anything as much as I have to stop doing something.
Sure, it would help my situation if I were to act positively (healthfully) but not acting negatively (not healthfully) would certainly seem to be a start.
Rome wasn't built in a day ("and neither was Milwaukee") so stopping would seem a reasonable place to start. Granted, starting something else, new and different, would be ideal, but let's be realistic, habits and tendencies are difficult to break; they didn't start overnight and it's unrealistic to expect that they could be stopped during the day; that's much easier said than done, especially for those not fighting the same battles of the bulge as I and many others like me, fight (hopefully not to a premature death, though).
Nevertheless, do my explanations/rationalizations just make me stubborn or is being resistant - or incapable - of change in this context make me stupid, and is stubborn really just another word for stupid? Not according to my Random House Thesaurus. Across from the word stubborn, there is no mention of the synonym, "stupid;" there's "obstinate, unyielding, unbending, intractable, recalcitrant, pig-headed, bullheaded," etc., but no stupid and no words even beginning with an "st". So stubborn is not stupid, at least in this reference source.
Maybe a dictionary will offer some additional insight. No, not according to my American Heritage Dictionary. Their definition of stubborn says "unduly determined, refractory, obstinate, not easily persuaded," etc., but again, no mention about being stupid. So now I'm really confused. In the two main library- and literary-type sources used to clarify the meaning of words, stupid appears not be associated with the word stubborn.
Therefore, in response to the many words of disappointment I have received from well-meaning friends and family members concerning my apparent inability/unwillingness to change my diet, I can only summarize my feelings as follows:
Just because you think I'm stubborn, doesn't make me stupid, too."
Kenneth B. Lourie is a regionally syndicated columnist who resides in Burtonsville, MD.