My grandpa used to say from time to time, "That's what makes horse races." I totally got that, if all the horses were exactly the same, then that race would be pretty boring and ultimately pointless. I've been thinking about that for a couple of days since I had a brief facebook chat with one of my old friends.
It was not a conversation of any great import, Gordon is now at the stage of life I was at when he and I first met. He has young kids and has learned firsthand that feeling of cold, black terror that comes when your children are threatened. I like to think that he is slightly more empathetic with my emotional responses to my kids, but Gordon is at heart a very practical and grounded person, so he is not ever likely to share them publicly.
At the end of our conversation, he asked me how the book was doing and I said "still very slow, but not for long...the world better watch out because I'm coming." To be frank, I expected one of his genially patronizing answers -- that don't bother me a bit, in fact I've come to be rather affectionate about that tone in Gordon's voice.
His response surprised me, "I like that!"
And that's what makes horse races, you can never be completely sure what those horses are going to do next. Let me make clear here that I know for a fact that Gordon supports me on my endeavors, he wants the book to be a success and he wants me to be happy. He, like Nelly, just doesn't always endorse how I go about doing my thing, it's a little airy-fairy for his taste.
Which is precisely the thing about him I love most, he challenges me and I challenge him right back. After the dust has settled, we are still friends, still bound by the bonds of voluntary affection and still very likely to have another strong disagreement about something. I value his opinion because he fights for it, he stands his ground with me every time - which is not an easy thing to do for most people. I'm a verbal street fighter, words are my weapons and my wit is honed more sharply than a samurai's blade, so anyone who can give that back to me is a keeper.
I'm saying all this today because there is a very important point here to be made. My little blog is growing every day - and welcome to all the new readers by the way! This is my personal journey, my road to travel, and I am delighted that so many of you are travelling with me. As much as I like to think I am right about absolutely everything, I am very wrong about very many things and it's up to you to slap me back down when I'm getting too uppity.
Metaphorically slap of course, the last person who tried to actually slap me was a mentally challenged individual at a bus stop. She was twice my size, but when that crazy bitch reached over the bus bench and put her hands on me, well it did not end the way she anticipated. Not at all. I really don't advise trying to physically harm me.
But sticks and stones, people, sticks and stones. Words won't break my bones at all, strong and dissenting opinions actually make me happy and THAT is what makes a good horse race.