Saturday, April 28, 2012


Growing up, the myth that we less than 5 or 10 percent of our brains really stuck with me, and even after it has debunked, it still clings to my mind.  I would not be surprised if it still resonates as true for some readers, but it is false.  While I understood the myth to codify the limitless power of the mind, the story also made me feel that no matter what, any person was still using only a portion of their intellect, with “portion” being a substantial ratio of less than that of the entirety of the brain’s functionality.  So as an amateur boxer, whenever some wiseacre or spoilsport would talk about the risk of my “getting my brains beat out”, I would tell them that it wouldn’t matter because I would STILL be smarter than they were!  And then proceed to skip jauntily away, singing tra-la-la as I go!

Things like that, along with my penchant for preferring confrontation to acquiescence growing up is why I occasionally I feel that I can be an a**hole.  I think that there isn’t anything wrong with being one, because sometimes it is the only appropriate thing to do.  I don’t suffer fools and ignorance lightly, and the more certain that someone is empirically, morally, and intellectually mistaken, the greater the chance for my “inner a**hole to emerge.  Thus, my response to the crass “brains knocked out” comment, which is still prolly true for most of the people that I meet!  Likewise, whenever I have found myself in the company of intellectual stalwarts, I know how to hold my place, pick my spots, and “act like I know”.

Because of this kind of thinking, that I was accessing more of my mental capabilities than were many of my contemporaries, I felt that should I inherit the fate that was scornfully (like asking a fireman or soldier if they fear death in fulfilling of their duties, it is a morbid and indulgent curiosity that makes some ask the obvious; mostly it is a fear that they would never have the courage to face anything they look at as daunting to them) projected for me that I would be far better equipped to deal with it, not only because of my intelligence but because of my more unquantifiable traits.  One of them being my philosophical meanderings and want for understanding, all things which are important parts of what I call my “eclectic method”, and what guides me through my adventures (cause don’t you know that life IS an adventure?) through this plane of reality.

I get frustrated by people who would work against themselves by speaking INTO their lives exactly what they did not want IN them.  No, I was not going to add the woman from school to any of my “rosters” or anything like that.  But I knew that by listening to her woes and how those thoughts contradicted what she was (hopefully) working for by being enrolled in school.  “Blocking her own blessings” is what she was doing and I can’t come up with any other way to express what I was feeling towards her (I could have thought of something else to express that assessment, but I was ALWAYS a lazy smart guy!!) as she spoke of all her troubles, which was preceded by her telling me of her spiritual awakening and how much of a revelation it was for her.

Sitting here looking at Madison and Doug (that is what I am going to call my mountain bike!), along with my “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster for company, I am chill.  There are kids outside playing within earshot, my window is open, and I am following Parrish and Eric’s advice and am chilling!  But I feel like I need to clean some of the leavings on the floors of the hallways in my brain, so I guess that is why I am posting.

*sigh* Too bad that we are not talking… because I recall when I first reached out to reconnect with Nebraska and she sent me picture of herself, I was like, “MAN, she looks GOOD to me!!”  Then when I actually got the opportunity to lay my eyes on her in person, she looked better than I ever imagined.  I thought I would be telling her how she had exceeded my expectations in nearly every category I had on a evening like this, but our difference in how we should conduct our relationship was simply too great.

Anywho, I am aware that she thinks that the “Mark” that she expected was not the one that arrived.  Part of why I did not feel comfortable with her kind of stems from what I took from a Bill Russell quote in a Sports Illustrated story years ago. 
"Remember, each of us has a finite amount of energy, and things you do well don't require as much. Things you don't do well take more concentration. And if you're fatigued by that, then the things you do best are going to be affected." -Bill Russell, 11-time NBA champion, winner of back-to-back NCAA championships and an Olympic Gold Medal

When I “signed up” for boxing, I made the conscious decision to risk myself with my sport.  When I chose the service, I knew that it came with the possibility that I may be called into combat, as an extension of the political will of my country.  And when it came to rushing to be married, I understood that if I were wrong, the stakes could be high, and they were.  But they were all bets that I placed on myself and I can live with the outcomes of those and most of the major adventures I have had in my life.  But the ones that would haunt and eat away at me as I think some of you may feel that those I have mentioned do, are those where I lived underneath the oppression of the projections of another’s image of who I should be, or by their interpretation of what my feelings towards them and our relationship.

I want to get rid of all the built-up pressure  and emotional residue that has developed as I find myself approaching at a point where Nebraska is not going to be a part of my life.  That always loomed as a possibility and why it was so kung-fu mega important that I have the kind of connection with my new hometown as I do.  Meeting THE Johnny Rodgers definitely confirmed that it is… now all I have to do is continue on my long and winding way, following to where this road leads, and to my destiny.


Ken Riches said...

Hope the writing of your feelings is helping you find peace with the future...

FrankandMary said...

Just because you lay some stuff down on a blog or in email about yourself doesn't mean that it is the total finished product of Mark. And I believe expectations often have a lot more to do with the person doing the expecting.

You don't do any sort of generic soft sell on this blog. You are probably a lot more the man you present than many other people are ..blogwise.

Sometimes I think we get so caught up in other things we only use 5-10% of our hearts. ~Mary

Thomas Alice said...

It kind of depends on how you define "using" your brain. Someone who devotes a large part of their day to watching and discussing reality televisions shows probably *is* using only five percent or so of their brains!

LceeL said...

I rather saddened by the notion that Nebraska and you are going to 'make it'. I'm sorry it's not going to work out.

Well, if it gets too bad - you could always come to Chicago. We got some fine women here.

Have Myelin? said...

Mary said "Sometimes I think we get so caught up in other things we only use 5-10% of our hearts."

Some people's hearts are not quite so wise, you know...

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