Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sticky knots

I done a few interesting things in my life and I have accomplished a few things, but if you asked me what accomplishments I took the greatest personal satisfaction with in achieving, it would not be my degree, awards I won while working in radio, or awards achieved in my current profession. No, it would be for some things many of you would find no big deal.

For the record, I am talking about personal satisfaction, things that have nothing to do with other people. I am very proud of the children and grandchildren I have reared and several different acts of kindness I have done for other people that I will not besmirch by calling attention to them. Those things are wonderful but outside the parameters of personal accomplishment.

One of the things I take great personal satisfaction in is learning how to tie a necktie. My father was a blue collar man and so neckties were relegated to church and weddings and for many, many years I wore a clip-on tie without a problem. Well, the insurance company my parents used put out a monthly newsletter composed primarily of filler. And one of the pieces one month was an illustration of how to a necktie.

It became a puzzle and a challenge to me and so I took one of my father's ties, untied it (IIRC) and then proceeded to tie it according to the guide. Lo and behold after one ore two minor points of confusion, I figured it out. And I have been tying neckties almost daily ever since.

I learned a few different knots, although I prefer the Windsor knot or the Half Windsor in order to hide that my collar button is usually unfastened (because of my enormous neck. I recently decided to go the rest of the way and take on the ultimate tie challenge, the self-tied bow tie, because, as you know, bow ties are cool.

Another thing of this nature was learning how to use chopsticks. I found it fascinating that people all over the world could work them but I couldn't make it work to save my soul. And then one time with Wilma at a Japanese restaurant I decided to try again, using the handy instructions on the back of the paper sleeve. With that try and with the help of very sticky rice, I was able to get the concept.

And we've talked before about me learning how to ride a bike. I guess that these things are so precious to me because of the amount of difficulty or fear I had to overcome to get there. Overcoming obstacles does make success sweeter. But I'd still rather have easy.

Chopsticks, naturally.

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