Tag Archives: personal failure

How Much to Help

Life is pretty good.

Nothing crazy is happening. Work isn’t too bad. I’m feeling good. Money is ok. Life is pretty good overall. But two things are splinters in my side and I’m not sure if they should be.

The first thing is, meeting with someone who contacted me a while ago. He wanted to meet because he wanted to discuss community leadership with other young community leaders. So right off the bat, I don’t consider myself a community leader. It’s one of those situations where I wonder, how much help will I be in this conversation, really.

Also, our schedules didn’t really match up the first time he contacted me. We eventually settled on a time/place to meet, but when I arrived there he didn’t show up. He emailed me about 20 minutes after our scheduled meting time saying he was going to be late. I had left after the first 15 minutes anyway, but he lost the benefit of the doubt with me after that.

He ended up contacting me later to reschedule. I gave him some times I was available on a Saturday, but our schedules didn’t really match up again. This last weekend probably would have been a good time to meet up, but I was relaxing and finally resting.

I think it bothers me that I’m not helping this guy. Deep down inside, I want to help. Part of the problem is that I might be too trusting. I want to trust this guy and give him the benefit of the doubt again. But I don’t really see this being useful. I don’t think two people, or maybe even a group of 10 people, can make much change, can do much good.

So that’s been bothering me and now when I check my email I expecting to see another email from this guy asking if I’m available this weekend or soon.

I don’t know.

The second thing is with this guy who I was in a fender bender with weeks ago. It was a fender bender. I gave him my insurance information since I hit him, although he was the one who doesn’t know how to yield. I didn’t file because I had no damage, so I just opened a claim in case he was going to file. Two weeks passed and he hadn’t filed a claim. I think the claims agent closed the claim. Then the third week he ends up texting me, asking if I know who he should contact. I give him the claims agent contact information. Two weeks later, today, he tells me he has called the claim agent, but they haven’t called him back. A few minutes ago, he said he didn’t want to call the agent anymore and asked me to pay for the repairs.

I don’t want to, because that doesn’t make any sense. I don’t pay for insurance to pay for repairs. That’s dumb. Also, I was thinking about offering him half, like $200, but that doesn’t make any sense for him. If he just calls, the insurance company will pay for all of the repairs and he won’t have to pay anything himself.

So how much do I have to help this guy. I think I’m like half responsible. The guy didn’t yield correctly. I hit him. I think it’s a 50/50 thing. I gave him my insurance info. I gave him the claim agent’s contact information. I gave him two phone numbers to call. That seems like more than the 50% of my responsibility. How much do I really have to do?

So that’s the second thing that’s been bothering me.

Well I’m not giving him any money, so it looks like this is one is going to a splinter for a while.


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Pussy Riot

Pussy Riot was on the Colbert Report last night.

The two ladies on the show didn’t speak English, but they captivated me. At first I thought it was just because they’re girls and kinda cute, blah, blah, blah. But I don’t think that is what it was. I listened to their words and saw their convictions in the expression on their faces. Their struggle was real. It is real.

I’d like to think I’m a good judge of character. More often than not I give the benefit of the doubt to people, but this was different. This isn’t one of those moments. The emotions these women feel is real. Their struggles are real.

They make me want to do something more with life. More than just failing to serve in public office. More than serving in public office. Surely, there is something I can do here. Not necessarily for them, but for people.

I need to be a better person.

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Amazing Spiderman Again

Two of my most favoritest movies are (500) Days of Summer and The Amazing Spider-man.

Today I was able to see The Amazing Spider-man in theaters again as part of AMC promotion. I relished the opportunity. As I’ve come to realize, I am a person who appreciates experiences and there is nothing like seeing a movie in theaters. That is a worthwhile experience. The opportunity to see one of my favorite movies on screen is a truly magical experience.

This is one of my favorite movies not only because it involves Spiderman, but because the movie stays true to the essence of Spiderman. What stuck with me the most from tonight’s viewing was the theme of responsibility. Specifically, Uncle Ben’s death showed how not doing the right thing has consequences and you become responsible for those consequences. Peter didn’t stop the burglar and the burglar later shot Uncle Ben. Peter indirectly hurt the people he loved.

It reminded me of something I fear. See, yesterday afternoon my family was talking about what they fear. The typical stuff came up: snakes, bugs, drowning. I said I wasn’t really afraid of that stuff anymore. The only thing that really came to mind as a fear was that our cat would get hurt. At that moment, that was all I could think of as a fear.

But I had forgotten how one of my biggest fears are my own actions. I’m not talking about failure. I’m not really afraid of failing. I’m talking about the loss of self, the loss of control. I’m talking about not doing what is right, the same way Peter let the burglar go, and dealing with those consequences.

What if one day I lose control and that hurts the people I love? What if one day I get really mad at my wife and hit her? What if one day I become verbally abusive to my children? What if I grew selfish again and every day make the lives of the people around me worse and worse? What if one day I listen to those voices deep down inside me and become a bad person?

Am I a bad person? I asked myself that during my vacation. It was that Monday over dinner with my friend that I kept coming back to that question. Am I a bad person? I’ve grown so much since those high school days when I think I was a bad person. Will I regress over time? Will it be slow? Will I notice it? Is it starting?

I feel more selfish.

I try to live by two rules: 1) Don’t be a dick,  2) With great power comes great responsibility. One thing I did not like about the Spiderman movie was that Uncle Ben didn’t say #2.

The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline towards the religion of solitude. -Aldous Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)

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More Scared than Not

So I signed up for the ALPFA and DHBA networking happy hour that was today.

ALPFA (Association of Latin Professionals in Finance and Accounting, I think) and the DHBA (Dallas Hispanic Bar Association) hosted the happy hour.

Anyway, I signed up Sunday night. I figured if I signed up and paid the $10 fee, then I would have to go. I also thought that I could send an email out at work on Monday inviting other people to the event and maybe someone else would go with me. Well, I didn’t send the email out.

Either way, today I planned on going to the happy hour. I was dreading it, but I was set on going up until noon. At noon, a few co-workers and I had a lunch with one of the partners at our firm. It was just to catch up with us. Around the end of the lunch, the partner told us how he got to our firm and how he grew the business and how he became partner.

As he told his story, he reflected on how he came by the opportunity by chance. How he took that chance and with hard work and a little more luck turned those efforts into success.

Somehow that scared me.

I suddenly realized I was unprepared for this event. My probability of failure greatly outweighed by possibly successes and I wouldn’t risk it anymore. I didn’t even have an elevator speech. I quickly became afraid of choking. Even the way I was dressed seemed inadequate. This was going to be my first networking event and I looked sloppy. Even my hair seemed weird.

I couldn’t do it. I was afraid.

A hungry man is not a free man. -Adlai Stevenson, statesman (1900-1965)

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And I Lost

blah. I’m not sure how I feel. Fuck it, I don’t know how I feel.

Disappointment, yes. In myself, no. I worked hard. I gathered volunteers. I organized them. I did perfect from a campaign finance perspective. I didn’t fund raise and managed to break even. I worked through busy season and managed to knock on around 3000 houses and talk to a lot of people. I did my part. That should have been enough campaigning to get 1000 votes. But, no.

Disappointed in society, yes. Turnout was lower than it was last cycle, and there was even a city council race this time!

My goal was always 1000 votes. I thought I would win with 1000 votes. I was right. The result was 838 – 566.

I believed in the work I was doing and thought that was the way to motivate people to participate. I was wrong. It was foolish to believe I could convince people to care. It was foolish to think people could care. I was a fool, and it was a mistake.

And I will make that mistake time and time again because I don’t want to become the person who loses faith in us, in humanity.

I won’t run for the Board of Trustees again. I probably won’t run for office again, especially anytime soon. But I’ll find some other way to help society. I didn’t mind losing on Saturday because I was going to be fine regardless. I wasn’t running for my own good. I wanted to help, and I will help.

I just don’t know how yet. I’ll reassess, myself, life, goals, and etc, but I’ll be fine. I didn’t get this far in life without adversity and this won’t be last time I fail. I just need some time, which seems to be the one thing of which we can’t get enough.

So in conclusion, . . . fuck and double fuck. Good luck Nancy and congratulations.

In a completely rational society, the best of us would be teachers and the rest of us would have to settle for something less, because passing civilization along from one generation to the next ought to be the highest honor and the highest responsibility anyone could have. -Lee Iacocca, automobile executive (b. 1924)

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The 2nd Part

Yesterday, I wrote about some of the events of these last two years, but that was a little incomplete because I didn’t write about any of the bad stuff of the last two years.

Let’s see . . . the Camaro broke twice while under my care. I was forced into a side swiping an Expedition and knocked off the Camaro’s side view mirror. I side swiped the truck at the SMU parking lot. I seem to have a lot of car related issues.

oh, I took on way more debt thanks to SMU. So much that I felt a deep sense of failure while I was at SMU. It wasn’t until I got a job and started paying it off that the self-loathing began to subside.

I lost a friend.

Wow, this has taken me about half an hour to write. I’m sure more bad stuff has happened. I think I blocked out most of it.

Well, a very relevant quote today.

The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best — and therefore never scrutinize or question. -Stephen Jay Gould, paleontologist, biologist, author (1941-2002)

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You Have to Think

I’ve been spoiled.

I’ve spent so much time going to school and not caring about . . . other people. Now I’m in the working world and I find myself needing to care. I need to care because now I need to do well at work, build personal and professional relationships, get raises and promotions, and be in a good position to have a happy life.

It’s tiring. It’s tiring telling myself to try and care. It’s difficult to have to make conversations, when I’d much rather have quiet time. It’s difficult to share, because I don’t generally like to, but it’s necessary to make relationships.

It’s also tiring to . . . play the game. The game of work life. Several times I’ve caught my myself really considering more than peoples’ actions, but their motives. I’ve caught myself taking notes of preferences, weaknesses, and vulnerabilities. I don’t want to spend my life that way.

I think I’m ok as long as I know I’m doing it and can stop myself. I wonder if it’ll ever consume me.

Yes, I remembered to email myself the topics.
Yes, this was one of the topics.

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