Thursday, July 23, 2020

Pounding the round peg into a square hole means the hole changes also

This graphic, that is said to be from the National Museum of African American History and Culture, has got me thinking about how I, personally, fit into what is considered mainstream society.

Admittedly, I'm white, but I got to thinking about how I fit, or don't totally fit, what's thought of as mainstream.

See below graphic, more of my thoughts.

Here's a few things excerpted from this graphic as related to my personal experiences.

Nuclear Family.

I'm gay. I'm also not personally into the committed "two person style" relationship idea. It's sometimes thought of as a middle class model with white picket fence and all.

Emphasis on scientific method. Linear thinking, cause and effect, quantitative emphasis.

I basically believe science, but I was never that good at math. I'm more into speculative, creative thinking, but I avoid claiming that my hunches are, necessarily, scientific fact. I defer to the scientists.

I tend to believe the scientists tho I may not have the credentials to make my living that way.

I'm open, at least, to ideas, such as from religion, that aren't necessary always sticking to scientific evidence. There is a lot we don't know and I like to entertain speculation at least.

Protestant work ethic. Work before play.

I'm not really into that. I prefer part time work. I think I'm more noted for what I do on vacation (bike touring) than what I do at work.

My life isn't about striving for more money, but I am fortunate in many ways. I have no family to support (back to my ideas about relationships), my health is good, I don't own a car (or better yet a car doesn't own me), my rent has been affordable and the community I am in values more than just money.

At times, it can seem like a lonely course, but, in Bellingham, there are a lot of people who seem to value their non paid interests more than their jobs.

Time. Follow rigid time schedules.

I am seldom in situations where I have to show up right on time. I have a lot of free time and follow serendipity quite often; like when seeing someone unexpectedly in the park and then taking the time for an hour long, unplanned for conversation.

I often don't have goals.


I tend to think the system favors property owners.


I tend to avoid competition.

Communication. Avoid conflict, don't discuss personal life, be polite.

I tend to avoid conflict and I am polite, but I do often talk about my personal life.

I'm posting this as I contemplate how society, itself, has to stretch and change to accommodate variety. This includes some of our deep assumptions about what's normal and even what's logical.

I don't necessarily think society is evil. I buy a lot of it, but there are a lot of things I don't buy, so to speak. Society needs to be able to accept a wide range of skills. For instance not everyone is a technocrat. Can people still afford a place to live? I often find that marginalized folks, even the homeless have interesting stories to tell and things to offer.

I found this graphic in this article. Article was interesting also, but I tried to follow the link to what I thought was where the graphic came from. Couldn't find the graphic on quickly scanning a few pages.

I think article relates to how many people, of minority background, do measure up in our society and it is kind of a put down of the successful minority folks to gloss over this, as if all minority folks are destine to being the victims.

I see that point, but I also see some room for criticism of society as a whole. Assumptions about what the good life and the proper goals for life are.

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