Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mama On: Organzation

"Put things back where you got them, and they'll always be there when you need them."
This is Mamaknology 101: a concept so simple that its application is often overlooked. This concept is so universal that it applies to everything from your purse to your bank account. Making sure that things, including your relationships, education, and even your health are safely kept in line insures you a life less complicated.

And we all like less complicated, right?

Okay, here's where stuff gets complicated. Some of us like to bring the drama -- go out in public with it draped around our shoulders or wrapped all around our head and trailing in the breeze like a dirty wedding veil. For the record, this is not a good look on anyone, and all it takes to fix it is a little organization.

And before I forget, the corrolary to this one is, "do unto others as you would have them do unto you." This also translates as, "don't s**t where you sit."

Yes, my mother (Knower Of All Mama Knowledge) was full of sayings, but this one is on point. You want a life without drama and complications?
  • How 'bout you don't put any out there.
  • How about you give honesty where you would have others be honest with you.
  • How about remembering that while common courtesy is not always common, it is always ultimately appreciated.
  • How about you study for the tests that life will bring and answer challenges like an adult instead of as a child.
  • How about admitting your shortcomings and then doing something about them.
These are all things that a practicing Mamaknologist would do. Come to think of it, these are all things that a successful adult would do -- and all it takes is putting things where they belong.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mama On: Cherishing Yourself

"Always wear clean underwear in case of accidents."

To be sure, my mother did not have a lock on this one. Everybody's mother said this, but my mother added that you wanted to wear clean underwear so that you wouldn't get treated like a booger if you DID have an accident.

I might have been able to go a very long time without addressing this one, but for the fact that I recently encountered a young woman who chose the sans underwear option. Right. Out in the world with no drawers. And the only reason I (and about fifty other people) knew was because the wind blew, exposing her bare flesh. One witness, a man who obviously felt that all present should be informed, shouted and shared the news.

Sad as that was, my mother, the world's leading Mamaknologist would have been immediately appalled that a woman would think so little of herself. She would wonder why any woman would leave her home with her hair and nails done, and wearing what she thought to be a well-planned and fashionable outfit, only to leave her most precious physical asset open and bare to the world.

The Mamaknologist take on this is: Why? Why would you leave your body so publicly exposed? You don't know who's out there, and what they're bringing with them. Yes, I know that the AIDs virus does not survive once exposed to air, but we all know that there is so much else "out there," including perversion aided and abetted by video and the internet. Even if she thought she looked good with her personal and private parts made so public, why would any woman crave such negative attention in the first place?

This is not totally a question of home training or even sanity and though we might spend, or waste, hours postulating the answers, the bottom line is that a woman who cherishes herself and the gifts she brings is never going to abuse those gifts. The bible speaks of casting, "pearls before swine," but the Mamaknologist knows that if you don't respect yourself enough to cherish the gifts of your body, mind, and spirit, you can never expect anyone else to, either.

And that accident your mother warned you about? It could be waiting on a bus or train seat.  Wear your panties!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Mama On: Public Actions

"Actions speak louder than words."

The 2008 summer olympics have begun, and I am greatly reminded of my mother's reminder. Isn't it interesting how we look at 41 year old swimmer, Dana Torres, and see a heroine. We see her shining and indomitable spirit, her silver medal triumph, and a mother who has set an amazing example for children everywhere.

Then we look at the wrestler Ara Abrahamian, the Armenian-born wrestler from Sweden, who will always be remembered for his "hissy fit". He received a bronze medal for his performance in the 84kg class of Greco-Roman wrestling. During the award ceremony, Abrahamian stepped down from the podium, took off his medal and dropped it onto the wrestling mat. He then angrily left and was later quoted as saying "I don’t care about this medal. I wanted gold."

The Mamaknologist response? Hell, we all want gold. Suck it up, you big baby! Some things in this world are bigger than what you want. Abrahamian should have acted better, because his childish, selfish actions have defined him as a man and will forever speak for him on the world stage.