Archive for January 2011

Do Men Really Cry

I have lived in a society where taboos are taken very seriously and breaking one would very easily earn you outcast status. These range from stealing to killing and everything in between. Most of the don’ts were hidden in tales, especially for children, to make sure they stuck in their heads at all times. Things like ogres were invented to make sure that once mentioned, they instilled enough fear to last a lifetime. One of the famous don’ts is crying for men. Since early in our lives, we were made to believe that for men, the eyes are solely used for sight; nothing more! Even at tender ages as boys, crying was unheard of. It would bring one a very precarious reputation. Wait until you cry in front of girls and you are done. For crying is strictly a reserve of women! Boys don’t die, let alone cry! It was that strict. At the point of circumcision, it got worse. Even after the white man having brought the concept of anesthesia and “proper” hospital procedure, we still were taken to the river early in the morning and chopped using stone-sharpened blades – to become “real men”. Shed a tear and you are a living shame to your family and age mates!  
All this because men do not cry, whatever the circumstances. For crying is a sign of submission and weakness. It is conceding defeat in the situation at hand. I read somewhere that when a man is fired, they don’t cry; but rather, they shake hands and head out to plan revenge. Just like Tupac Shakur would have it, when thugs cry, they don’t shed tears they shed blood!  This is very parallel with the movie heroes shed no tears, for in their eyes, every man is a hero. Bring a woman in the picture and the man becomes not just a hero, but a savior, a god in some way!  That is my society, and we are not very behind as far as civilization goes! The disassociation of men with tears has for a long time been considered as a universal phenomenon. But not anymore!
I've passed the plains, endured the rain!
I've crossed heights, without minding terrain!
I've walked the rocks, never considered the strain!
Yet grown man at lenient pinch, wanna breakdown in pain!
Today many men are turning to crying as a resolve for their “little matters”. Ironically, these are the same ones that froze all the tears in their eyes some years back. Many men today are crying over failing relationships! Like we see in the movies. I have even heard arguments that when a man sheds tears over a matter in their relationships, it most certainly a genuine case! So my question is; are these men shedding real tears? Or is it just crocodile tears to get their dirty way out? 

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Yes, Okay But Later

It is always fascinating the thought of simple concepts that led to the world's most innovative discoveries. Think of Isaac Newton under the apple tree and facing the sky! Among the most useful of these is the alarm clock, and particularly the snooze function of the same. A bigger fraction of the alarm users are the wake up call users. And when the clock strikes five or whatever evil hour that one needs to kick the blankets away, the alarm clock chimes it's rude way to interrupt a good night sleep. While waking up is inexcusable, the exact moment for waking up can always be put off. Thus they switch on a default answer to the wake up call - Yes, Okay...but later!

This is just one simple example of the human nature as far as time consciousness is concerned. We always seem to create a form of deficit time, the kind that is necessary to slow our hurry in anything and everything. You will find that of all the things you schedule to do within a particular time frame, the biggest percentage is either done at the tail-end or later than the set duration. This does not mean that you were ambitious with your timing. You might actually have been very generous and yet find yourself against time (not time against you!).

But note that you are doing great if at all you beat a deadline without being pushed by your boss! The truth is that only a very small percentage of us meet our time targets. It gets worse at times, not only do we miss the targets by some days, but we also never get started on our 'time budgets' at all! Some will push the activity from one period to the other thinking that the next time it will be easier on their schedules, only to find that it was worse. This in turn creates a viscous cycle of 'I will do it tomorrow's'. some will eventually forget there was something to be done all together.
Think of the famous New Year resolutions. This to many is usually a scape-goat to the failures of the past year. Many explain how much they needed to do this thing but time, or money, or their families stood in the way. Once they year has set on its journey, we keep piling issues on top of the resolutions that they soon suffocate under the weight. And another new year set in and more resolutions are made! The problem here is not the resolution, rather, it is the fact that you have not set up a savings account, you are still adding weight, you have not advanced your education and so on.
The simplest way to meet our own deadlines is to breakdown whatever activities we might be planning into logical milestones. This gives us manageable goals, for example, you no longer look at building your own home, but rather buying a plot, procuring architectural services, hiring a contractor to build the first phase et cetera. The result is the same, but the load is much less and the chances of failure negligible.

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