Tag Archives: Fists

Rose-Colored Contacts

I’m more the type to yell at someone to get me another glass of water.

You do know the question to that answer, yeah, dudes. For those of you a bit slow on the uptake (no, not you. The other dude. Yeah, him. Right.) is “Are you a glass-half-full dude or a glass-half-empty dude?”

It’s a question that gets to the bottom of the nature of perception, how we see the world. Are we inherently optimistic, in seeing the glass as half full, or are we inherently pessimistic, in that we see the glass as half empty?

It’s the same glass, with the same amount of water. The way we perceive it, however, tells us a lot about ourselves. I made a little joke up there in the lead, but that’s not really the type of dude I am.

When I see a glass that’s not full, I see a half-empty glass and begin wondering who drank the other half and if the half that remains is poisoned. More pessimistic than I wish that I was.

Events bring out the pessimist in me. However, that’s not all I am.

When I face a question about a person, it’s a completely different person. It seems like I’m always thinking the best about people. If someone’s never done something before, I still believe they can do it. I’m an optimist about a person, a pessimist about people as a group. I feel like I sort of fall into the camp as outlined by the great sage and philosopher Agent K.

Had he ever existed, which he most assuredly did not, Agent K might have said, “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.”

So I’m not alone in this.

But, and here’s the big point here, I didn’t like being that way. I didn’t like always assuming the worst was about to happen.

So I decided to change. I decided that, instead of always looking for the hammer to drop, I’m going to compliment the person holding the hammer on her lovely nail polish. Instead of ranting about the litter on the side of the road, I’m going to think about how it’s less than it’s been in years past, then I’m going to pick up all I can carry and feel better about having made the world a (slightly) better place.

My mom had a number of favorite sayings she would repeat as often as possible. One of those was something she cribbed from a radio psychologist, Dr. Joy Brown: “You can’t change other people. The only person you can change is yourself.”

And, you know, they were right. I know that there are people who bug me just by breathing. I feel my blood pounding in my ears, my fists clenching all that. But that person’s not going to change. It’s who they are.

I have to decide that it won’t bother me. And it’s more than possible. It’s actually easy. It really is, dudes.

You can decide to be more positive and you’ll be more positive. You can decide to let the little things just slide off your back and they will.

Since I’ve decided to be more positive, to see a glass someone filled up halfway just for me, I find that I’m seeing more positive things happen. Not only that, but I’m feeling like I should be doing more little things to make the world a (slightly) better place.

Instead of getting irritated that someone left their grocery cart in the middle of a space instead of putting it away just two spaces over, I’m glad I came along so I can move that one and another that’s nearby because it will make some anonymous Harris Teeter worker’s day a little easier.

It’s all in how we choose to perceive the world and the people around us.

So what’s it going to be, dudes? Are you going to be positive or negative? It’s up to you.

I know you’re going to make the right decision.

Share on Facebook

All In All, It Looks Like The Day Is Going To Be Super, Man

Yeah, that’s right, dudes.

You read the title correctly.

I made a punne, or play on words there. Because I’m so ready to see the Superman movie, Man of Steel. Seriously, I just can’t wait.

I know there’s going to be stuff in the movie that makes me want to tear out the few remaining hairs on my head, I know this. Still I can’t wait. I’ve read a few advance reviews and the amazing thing is that I think I’ll finally be getting something I’ve wanted from a Superman movie for a long time: Superman will be punching things with his fists.

He won’t be fighting a real-estate land grab. He won’t be a deadbeat dad. Or a stalker.

I am excited.

I also am at the theater. Which is why this is so short. In fact, why not go see the movie as well?

Come on, man. It’ll be super.

Wait, that didn’t work.

I . . . No, never mind. I’m out.

I’ll let you know what I think of the movie early next week. If you see it before then, stop by the comments and let me know what you thought of it. I really want to know.

Share on Facebook

Twelve By Any Other Number

It’s been common knowledge since parents first took their young dudes and dudettes out to teach them how to drive.

You should always drive with your hands on the steering wheel at 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock position. That is, hold your left hand slightly to the left of the top of the steering wheel and your right hand slightly to the right of center.

Apparently, that is no longer the case. And it’s all down to something that was designed to make us safer in the car. Unfortunately, that thing to make us safer can now use our handy position on the steering wheel to cause us more damage than we’d get if our hands weren’t even on the wheel. Although that last might make it a bit more likely that we’d have an accident.

Yeah, it’s the airbag. Turns out, when you have an accident, that triggers the airbag compressed within the steering column. The airbag bursts forth from the exact center of the steering wheel, inflates quickly and cushions you against hitting the steering wheel.

The problem comes in that, if your hands are at 10 and 2, the airbag has a very good chance of blowing your fists through your eye holes. In a manner of speaking.

Not only that, but the advice on where to put your hands was concocted long before power steering became standard on almost every car made around the world. Now, the mixture of those two things is causing insurance agencies like AAA to recommend you not use the 10 and 2 position.

AAA Manager of Driver Training Operations William Van Tassel, PhD, explains in the video below that “10 and 2” dates from the era before power steering. Turning the wheel required more force then, and pulling down on it was the easiest way to do it.

But easy-to-turn wheels and airbags have changed the logic. If the driver’s hands are at the top of the wheel when the wheel-mounted airbag deploys, they are likely to be knocked into his face. If they are at the bottom of the wheel, they will be sent sideways, and do no further damage.

The better hand positions, Tassel says, are 9 and 3 or 8 and 4, where they are out of the way and still in control.

Well, that’s moved us into the 20th century. If only we’d hurry up and get some flying cars around so we could move into the current — 21st — century.

The only question now is will we as parents be able to remember the new advice when it comes time for us to be the latest sacrificial lambs to take a fledgling dude or dudette out onto the road and begin our reacquaintance with appalling fear and the prayer such engenders?

Share on Facebook