Page 1 of 1

An Apology to Charlie

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 7:44 pm
by That Was Jonathan E. Then
It's morning here now. I walked in the woods yesterday afternoon and listened to the trees. They don't understand anger. They live on a different time scale, but they still make music. The night has passed and with it the very last of my anger. As Gandhi says, "Anger was a short madness."

There's another saying of Gandhi's, "Be the change you want to see in the world." To be honest, I find that more of a challenge than I can manage most of the time. However, I've reconceived it for myself as "Be the peace you want to see in the world." That I try for every moment of every day, which is not, unfortunately, what I attain every moment — but it's my goal and, for the most part, a reasonable one.

The little lane in the woods that we live on is called Peaceful Place. We pretty much bought the house sight unseen because of the address. After a long and tedious process of negotiation and partially completed repairs, we eventually moved in the week of 9/11 in 2001, the most surreal and disturbing week of my life and one I'm sure none of us hope to repeat. I always took this synchronicity as a sign, not only that the universe was looking after my wife and me, but also as a reminder that peace is the only worthwhile direction to orient myself towards.

And so my anger toward Charlie was a failure of myself and my own aspirations as much as an insult to him. I believe that one should be responsible for one's own feelings. As Gandhi also says, "Nobody can hurt me without my permission." I wrote some very rash and hurtful things towards him. I am extremely sorry for allowing those feelings to exist and to be expressed. I apologize to Charlie and to all those other Forum members who found my words offensive.

As I was reminded by more than one member, Charlie is "one of the most decent human beings," "incapable of any malice or ill-feeling towards anyone," and, plainly, "a good man" as well as "a wily old diplomat." I always knew the first three, but perhaps did not appreciate the last attribute fully. I did not remember all the stresses he has been under with this whole uproar — and, in the heat of the moment yesterday morning, I added to those stresses rather than attempt to deal with him respectfully. I am sorry for that as well as for the words I used.

I believe in peace and will attempt to uphold the values that contribute to peace more consistently in the future. Again, I am sorry for the pain that I caused Charlie with my words. He undoubtedly deserves to be treated better as does any sincere and honest human being. Even those humans who do not act sincerely or honestly should be dealt with in a way that increases the likelihood of peace, rather than assaulted out of anger. This is the lesson I take from this incident. The full Gandhi quote from my first paragraph is, "Fasts could not be undertaken out of anger. Anger was a short madness." I shall attempt to remember that.

Re: An Apology to Charlie

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:32 am
by Charlie
Jonathan E. wrote:"a wily old diplomat." .

While being greatly relieved that Jonathan is still with us - it would have been terrible if, after all that we had done to try to keep everyone on board, it was his body that should have fallen over the rails and into the water, never to be seen or heard from again - I'm not sure I want to go around with 'wily old diplomat' stuck to the brim of my hat. Nothing I can do about the 'old' bit, but I've never qualified for 'wily'. I'm too naive too qualify for that description.

Anyway, no apology necessary, Jonathan, just glad to know you are still on the ship.

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:56 pm
by c hristian
didn't see this until just now.

while I never took myself out of this board, I most certainly wasn't too inclined to post much of anything, if anything at all, without the likes of you and the others who left for a while, around. It just looses all the fun.

And in the end, we all just want to have a little FUN! (insert your definition of fun here)

I must confess, I was not happy myself with Charlie's notable absence in posting sometimes, but we are seeing him SPEAK OUT a bit now! Wow! Good Going Charlie!

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 11:43 pm
by That Was Jonathan E. Then
Charlie, thanks for your words of reassurance. The apology is yours to keep, even if not necessary. Perhaps you should frame it and hang it on your kitchen wall in case it's needed in the future. You never know with a wild old man like me loose in the forum!

As to the quotes with which your hat brim is now adorned, they genuinely came from others in various messages — and, much as I disapprove of PMsing, I do read them. But, hint, everybody, that button that says "email" towards the bottom left of my postings? It works. Just comes straight to my desktop and is soooo much more convenient. Especially when it comes to a quick delete.

Perhaps that "wily" was a typo and it was supposed to be "wild" and so welcome to the brotherhood of wild old men. I quickly add that women are welcome in my brotherhood — there's no sexism, or racism, in my brotherhood. As to the "old", well, just a day or two ago I heard it said, "Fifty is the new forty-nine." Ummm, yes? I'm a bit late for that too.

Rest assured that I will continue to drop in and make irreverent and irrelevant remarks of a vaguely musical nature between working on the scenes for my new play, The Rough Guide to the Dramatic Fine Art of Flouncing — A Tragically Comic Farce In Three Acts. Needless to say, it's a satire — and a bit of a melange. But I have some good characters: Charlene, Desdemona, Juanita, Jude the Obscure, Eve, Saint Nicholas aka Santa Claus, Norman Wisdom will be making a comeback, and there's also Nigella with some recipes to share, Father Gordon and Lady Macbeth. I always say why create a character when you can just steal from the classics. I think it will be quite gay when it's finished.

You did get around to framing that apology, didn't you? It might be needed even sooner than I thought.