Thursday, June 05, 2008


(It seems I'm not the only person eager to tie the knot. Go California!!! I just love the mental image of hordes of people madly in love storming the clerks' offices with shit-eating grins on their faces.)

I was talking with a friend the other night about what makes relationships work in general and what makes my relationship with the Pirate work in particular. It occurred to me that I approach my relationship in the same way that I approach the rest of my life. I have a simple motto by which I've lived for many years. It goes like this:

You do the best you can with what you got in the time allotted.

It reminds me that I'm not perfect, I'm not super-human, I can't do everything, and some times there are compromises to be made, but if I do the best I can with whatever I have to work with, than I'm doing OK. That's really all anyone can do. I can't bend the laws of physics to achieve my goals, but I can give my utter best effort to whatever I'm doing within the contstraints that the world imposes. And yes, the world does impose contstraints.

If you do that, it also makes it that much easier to be a forgiving person. It also makes it easier to accept forgiveness from others when you fuck up. (I have particular difficulty with this.) I know that I do my best for the Pirate. I'm not perfect, but I always make an effort. He knows this and so when I fall short he's never upset. Ditto the reverse. We're not perfect, but we do our best and are accommodating and flexible. There is a corollary to this motto which I learned from my high school chemistry teacher. It states

Live your life so as not to be an inconvenience to others.*

Sounds cheesy, but it's a good approach. If, in your day-to-day activities, you think "will doing this be a nuissance to someone?" or "How can I rearrange this to make it less inconvenient for X?" things seem to go OK. This doesn't mean being a doormat, it doesn't mean living your life for other people, but it does mean living your life in such a way that you don't force other people in to situations where they have to be a doormat for you. It means being independent, self-sufficient, and not being a burden to anyone.

We are all occassionally a burden to someone. That's human nature. Sometimes we all need looking after. But that goes back to the first statement. If you do your best to not be a pain-in-the-ass, people will recognize this and be forgiving and helpful those times when you are. And you can do the same for them.

That's all, really. Pretty straightforward stuff.

What are your favorite mottos/mantras?

*Thanks, Fr. Maclernan. I don't remember much about electron orbitals or covalent bonds, but this little gem stuck, and frankly, it's more useful anyway.


Miss Melville said...

Here's to you, Fr. Mac *raises glass*

All I remember is that paradichlorobenzine is sublime, and not to be an inconvenience. :)

Geosomin said...

orbitals and bonds are nice...but that motto sounds like something to live by.

FirstNations said...

oh geeze. me, i've always been more of a 'If you love something set it free; if it does not return, hunt it down and kill it' kinda person.

you think i say that merely for comedic effect? nooooo, paco.

that, and-tritely enough- 'What goes around, comes around'. and to tell you the truth, thats been a really, really good way to live, too. what you put out there is what you'll get back.

*wanders off singing 'My Favorite Things'*

Donn said...

Life is full of an inconvenient truths innit?

As long as you can keep yourself from believing your own spin you have a chance...
however slight...
of being content and being more charming than tedious.

Although I sure do like Fn's approach..hmmm...
is it OK if I change my answer?

Homer said...

Stop, look, listen. A simple maxim, but one worth adhering too.

FirstNations said...

hey, ya lush, I found those pictures you wanted. they's posted up on my last two posts. the bong, and the dong.

lets not forget 'Think globally, act locally.' which i did, in favor of the 'kill things' aphorism. which when you think about it is me all over. still.

ziggi said...

favourite mottos to live by eh???

Do unto others before they have a chance to do it unto you.


Chaucer's Itch said...

MM: what's so wonderful about paradichlorobenzine?

Geo: bonds are lovely, but not the kind you're thinking of!

FN: do us all a favor and write us your version of 'My Favorite Thing.' I think we need to hear this.

Donn: you can change your answer, but then you'll have to run for Congress. They specialize in that over there.

Homer: Indeed! The most valuable things I learned in life I learned in kindergarten!

FN: I thought it was 'Think locally, bomb globally.' Or do I have that mixed up?

Ziggi: the corollary to that is Pirate's maxim: "Never be afraid to be the first to resort to violence."

ZB said...

Never go down on a forward wiper.

It's a fairly specific mantra to live by.

Chaucer's Itch said...

true, but how do you know she's a forward-wiper until you've found out the hard way? i mean, it's not a question you can casually drop over a drink, is it?

llewtrah said...

Any good that I may do let me do it now, for I may not pass this way again.