Looking in the mirror, I recognize my father. My family may argue that I’m like my mother when I talk to everyone and anyone around me, go to all ends to win a game, or threaten to suck up items left in my path when I actually do vacuum. But if it were put to a vote, there’s no doubt on which end of the continuum I’d be. Here are some of the characteristics I inherited from a man I can’t help but admire.
1. Unconventionality – If there are multiple paths to an end, why wouldn’t you take one that weaves through the brambles, backtracks, then zigs and zags? There’s so much more to learn and discover. Besides, it’s quite entertaining watching others’ confusion when they try figuring out where you’re headed!
2. Impulsivity – The world is filled with so many opportunities. This was fun! Hey, let’s try screen printing!
3. Dry Humor – Yes, it has led us into trouble, but it is ALWAYS worth it. A tombstone that reads “Guess Who?” and phrases like, “I used to be conceited until I became perfect.”, “Do you know what happened here 100 years ago?… Nothing.”, “Did you see that?!…Neither did I.”, and, “Mitch, do you need any help?… Carmen! Michelle needs your help!” If these don’t at least make you smile, you’d best leave now.
4. Hyper-focussing (Okay…Obsessing)– What’s intriguing to people like us is incredibly interesting: what’s not is all clutter. We engross ourselves in our interests – delving deep and experiencing things from the inside-out. There’s no such thing as halfway.
5. Selective Hearing– I’m sorry. Did you say something different than what I was thinking about?
6. Creativity – Just because someone hasn’t seen it, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Everything starts with an idea that someone choses to nurture. Edison’s quote, “There’s a way … – find it.” hung in my father’s workshop. He lived by this mantra to which I strive.
7. Introvert– We who feel deeply crave time alone. How else would we be able to reflect on all the beauty around us and find ways to put it into words or create it on canvas?
8. Spirituality and Naturalist– Being present in the midst of creation is a sanctuary for peace and healing. There’s nothing so tranquil as the sights, sounds, and scents of our Creator’s work! Have you ever been lost in the scent of the morning forest or the coo of a mourning dove?
9. Keeper of Curiosities– Gargoyles, aerator shoe straps, and a wooden foot. Walnut shells, gait rollers, and a rusty horseshoe. Each either serves a purpose, elicits sentiment, or inspires imagination. This is a no judgment zone – not seeking affirmation.
10. Obstinance – In explaining the importance of remaining strong in the face of adversity, I remember my father telling me, “Your mind is the only thing in life that is truly yours. Everything else can be taken away. You’ll always have your mind unless you allow others to take it.” What else is there to say?
Do you know people with any of these characteristics? I invite you to share your stories in the comment box below.