Friday, December 26, 2008
A BOLD, FRESH PIECE?
I've read a lot of books in my life. Few, however, have reached my soul.
A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity has done just that. It reached my soul because it was me. Anyone who grew up a boomer in Catholic schools will appreciate this book on another level. O'Reilly did a good job of letting us know why he has the values he has.
It is important to remember that those values were inculcated by a Catholic/Christian education and those stick with you for your life. He talked about not knowing anyone who wasn't a conservative or held conservative values, and that struck a chord with me. I, too, was, as my mother constantly tells me, a little wild. In her words, it was tough to make me understand. In spades. I was a product of 12 years of Catholic education. Some of it took, some of it didn't.
I tell my students about Catholic school and they laugh at the discipline. I told them about getting hit with rulers on the knuckles and they laugh. They ask me if I changed in high school. I was thinking fast about how, if I told them I was a punk, they would think that was OK. I talked to my Mom and she said, don't lie it's a sin. Case closed. I told them that when I was in high school, I didn't get the message. Our HS had a demerit system. Twenty demerits per quarter for each student, ten for each athlete. Uh-oh. I played sports all-year around. You got three demerits for talking. My students inevitably say, Uh-oh. Any demerits over ten required you to miss the next game. I didn't want to miss a game so I took option B. That was whacks with a paddle. I can't count the number of whacks I got. Mostly, one or two before every game.
My dad was philosophic about it. His philosophy: when you get tired of getting your butt pounded, you'll stop getting demerits. Pretty simple. Nope, not so simple. I was a rebellious punk who wouldn't give in to the discipline. Consequently, I got my butt pounded pretty much before every game. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.
I agree with O'Reilly, I learned all my values from my education. It has stuck with me and it won't leave any time soon. My parents reinforced the values and I thank them for that everday. Although, my mother is a life-long Demo who voted for BO, she is still a role model for me. My dad passed away in June, but he is still a great influence on me and I think about him everyday.
If you want a great read and an insight to O'Reilly, this is a great book. I enjoyed it immensely and I recommend it wholeheartedly. My parents were his parents and overall, it was just a great read and I loved it.