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It’s not about stocks and bonds, nor is it a rant about people behaving like idiots. It’s an observation I’ve made as I grow older and, I hope, more mature. Mentally and emotionally that is – I’ve no interest in maturing any more physically!

Let me cite an Interview Mickey Rourke did with Larry King to help promote The Wrestler. Great movie, by the way, and Mickey Rourke did a phenomenal job in it. Anyhow, Mr. Rourke had not done much of anything acting-wise in quite a while. He said it was because he made a lot of stupid choices when he was younger and he was a real punk about it. I’m paraphrasing, but the gist is the same I believe. He’s since learned the error of his ways and I think it really shows in his acting. First The Wrestler, then Iron Man 2. He did a great job in both. Sure, his character in Iron Man 2 was rather shallow and limited, but he did as much with it as he could and he had me convinced he was a mad Russian scientist. The movie overall was light, fun, and action oriented but Mickey Rourke’s addition to it was that he made it feel deeper and darker. He added some angst and some thought to it that made me, at least, feel as though under the right circumstances even someone with the best intentions could turn out bad.

Okay, enough about actors and Hollywood. How does this apply to real life and, more importantly, when am I going to get to a punchline? No punchline planned, I’m sorry to say. But as for the point, well the point is that we’re all young punks at some point or another. We leap before looking. We say things we don’t think through clearly. We do things that, in hindsight, we really shouldn’t have done.

My wife, bless her soul, has spent many years working on teaching me that the internal censor is a good thing. I still sometimes fly off the handle but I’m a lot better these days than I used to be. I still use her as an external censor occasionally as well. I know I think and feel differently than a lot of people do, so I like to make sure somebody who’s a little bit closer to “normal” can flag any glaring mistakes. It’s not so different from submitting a book to an editor really. Otherwise I take forever as I deliberate on what to say or do. I like to call it making an informed decision.

Is there a magic age when we start doing this? I think not. It’s a constant state of mental and emotional evolution and some are better at it than others. Men, in particular, are probably a little slower at it than women. Let’s face it, we’re impulsive and like to think we’re the Masters of the Universe. Oh sure, there are exceptions, but the majority complies with that, I think. Then again I’ve known some pretty obstinate women who refuse to be objective.

So there, no moral and no decent punchline. Sure I’ve got examples a-plenty from what I see around me on a daily basis, but that’s not what’s prompting this either (at least not directly). Odds are everybody else sees it too. If we’re lucky, we see it in ourselves and recognize it as something to work on. I know I’ve still got a ways to go – otherwise I might not have even posted this! 🙂

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