Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Interesting Movie

I just saw The Squid and the Whale. It's a fascinating movie that takes a very honest look at modern family life. I'm deliberately not going to spoil the plot for you, but I'd like to share two important lessons I drew from it.

The first is that many people tend to expend too much energy making judgements - overtly or internally - about other people; judgements about them based on their education, their physique, their attractiveness, and/or their wealth. And some even take this to the next step, making comparisons of themselves with others based on these same things. Do any of these sound familiar: "I spent more time in university so I know more than him." "I'm thinner & prettier than she is so I'm more successful." "I'm richer than you so I'm better than you."

Based on the law of averages, sometimes these things may be true. But just as often they may be complete crap!! Though most people are not very good at consistently lying to others, we all seem to be experts at lying to ourselves. An important lesson of this film is to just stop making these comparisons and instead focus on making yourself a better human being. Step #1 is for all of us to stop being so damned selfish!

The second lesson is an indirect result of not following the first lesson: People who look up to you, especially children, are easily influenced by the things you say and the things you do. While none of us can be perfect, one should take extra care & attention to worry about the negative repercussions our words & actions may have on the younger set. The next time you see some teenagers acting like jackasses, just realize for a moment that some adults chose not to be very good role models for them. The next time you're driving or buying something at a store, or passing someone on the street, think for a moment how your actions at that very moment will influence the people around you. I know I'm going to.

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