Please bear with me as I recount a personal, non political story.
Recently I found myself in need of making some repairs on my kids’ swing set in our backyard. Some of the wood was rot, there were weak spots throughout and when the kids played, it bent and swayed. The previous owners did not take care of it and its mere existence was a threat to the safety of kids around the area.
I spoke to a lot of people and there were varying opinions as to how I should fix it. Some suggested that painting over the whole thing to make it look better. Others suggested I only address the few parts that were worn out while others argued I should pull the whole thing out of my yard and let my kids fend for themselves and hope for the best. The latter made me worry. Without a structured environment in my backyard I had concerns that some kids that I did not approve of in the neighborhood might come in and offer my kids entertainment that I did not approve of.
I decided to beef up the foundation and structure of the swing set. I though if I added some material in key places, it would provide enough structural support and time for me to continue on improving on other key parts. Some people did not like this idea. They argued that the swing set was so far gone that adding key supports to allow fixes to be made would not only fail, but might make the swing set worse. Truth be told, those people never wanted a swing set to begin with so no matter what I did, they would be against me.
It turns out that, although it was a lot of hard work, adding the additional supports has made the swing set more stable and safer. I am able to continue making much needed improvements and repairs and the outlook for the set is looking good.
My neighbor, who argued against adding the additional support, really was stubborn about his opinion. I have told him that is seems to have worked and yet he still argues with me and says it will be a failure. For weeks I invited him to come over and see for himself, but he said he was too busy trying to get this promotion at work and that he didn’t have the time. What bothered me was that, although he had not seen the improvements for himself, he still felt that it was ok to tell everyone that my plan was a failure. Eventually he can over for a visit.
As he swung on the previously weak swing set, a swing set that is now safe enough for him to play on; he argued that it did not work. When I pointed out the obvious, that it was a lot better and safer, he went on and on about how it was not the additional support or work that I had done that had made the set more secure. He said that while it may be true that it is technically safer than before, and that he respected my work (I think he was pandering), other factors that were already in motion were the real reason for the improvement.
Why won’t he admit that the addition of materials and work has turned out amazing improvements? He has criticized me before for being stubborn and arrogant and not acknowledging the obvious. Why is it ok for him to be that way?
I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that he wants to move into my house and push me out of the neighborhood, no matter what.
Well sorry that I decided to post about something non-political… Right?
Cross Posted at Bearing Drift.