We are in this together

FTLComm - Tisdale - Sunday, December 1, 2002
I was doodling along last Saturday when mid block this young couple got out of a vehicle and set off jaywalking across the street. I was a little to far away to get a good picture, but quickly snapped the image above because it struck me as just plain interesting.
As you may know, there are cultures where when walking together it is considered downright inappropriate for a woman to walk beside her husband, but must maintain a stately seven paces behind to show respect. This always puzzled me and has been more than once been the subject of a debate between my wife and I. We often go for walks but alas I am slow, I have short legs and am not nearly as fit as she and I so often find myself like the wives in one of those countries trailing behind my wife.
So it amused me to see this couple striding across the street, no doubt he could keep up with her but the main thing is that she had the assertiveness to lead the way. As an aside on this topic have you noticed how often at cross walks in small towns there are so many people who feel they must rush and sometimes break into a run as they cross in front of a yielding car. My arrogance has always thwarted this inclination and besides the driver in the vehicle is sitting comfortably in a heated or air-conditioned vehicle and can just darn well wait for me to make my slow pace across the street. I suspect that this might be the case with this pair, she might be rushing to get out of the way of traffic while he feels no need to rush.
What ever was the cause, it is hardly important, but the other dynamics of being a couple are far more fascination and downright vital to our society.
I get a kick out of the fantasy television series called "Charmed" where the witches are always pointing out their combined strength, "the power of three." Magnifies their energy and makes them virtually indestructible. Cool idea but for me there is a lot to be said for the "power of two." I would even go further, collaboration and working together is a concept that needs to be emphasised. Our American neighbours in the movies and in their culture, glorify the magnificence of the individual, when in fact as a species, our real strength comes from our ability to work with one another.
I am convinced that the team work between my parents, or between my wife and I, is not just twice as capable, but far exceeds that proportion. That old axiom about "two heads being better than one" is only a hint at the real power. I have seen over and over instances of people sharing a problem and coming up with solutions and working results that are always greater than twice what could have been accomplished by one person.
As a school principal it took me years to realise that being the boss was a true waste of time. With me giving orders and directing the flow of work, I found most school's would be doomed to failure. But when I was able to lead my coworkers with common goals and encouraged them to contribute and carry out solutions we as a team could accomplish things which were absolutely awesome.
The economics and responsibilities of this place in time demands that we have creativity and exceptional industry to support a family and provide for our needs. May you have the good fortune of having a partner to share your life with and may that partner have the self determination to think for himself and herself as you work together towards your goals and life together.

Timothy W. Shire


Thanks to Elton John for the song for today.


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Editor : Timothy W. Shire
Faster Than Light Communication
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