The following story is one I told very early on, when this group was started. It was a valuable lesson I learned once and it applies now in the age of social media. After you read the story, I have a few more words for you.
A 2 Minute Talk That Has Lasted For 40 Years.
Udo was of German descent. He had a coarseness about him, but an incredible refinement as well. He adapted to the situation he was in at the moment. When he retired after a long career in the excavation business, he sold me his office and yard, along with some of his heavy equipment and trucks.
We lived across the street from he and his wife, so our visits were frequent. In retirement he moved from his lifetime hobby of flying planes, to flying helicopters. He would often fly me around to look at my projects. It helped him stay in touch with the business he loved and to help mentor to me.
My friend Udo and I flew down to a project I was building on the Guadalupe River, a new State Park. The year was 1979. I would have been 27 years old.
We were being treated unfairly by an inspector. It was time for a head butting. Several of the Texas Park and Wildlife Reps were there along with the inspector we were having the problems with.
I had studied the situation completely. As soon as the helicopter landed I was out and in the middle of the them making my case. Within five minutes the whole bunch had come around to my way of thinking and the inspector was dressed down by his superiors.
Udo had gotten out of the chopper and had moved in close enough to hear the conversation, but kept his distance. It wasn’t his battle, so he knew his place.
When we were back on board of the aircraft Udo looked at me and told me what a great job I’d done making my point. I was feeling the pride swell up inside me. Then he said something that has stuck with me since.
He said “you really had all the facts down. You made your case. But I was truly embarrassed by your foul language. You took a great thing and cheapened it so much with vulgarity. Son, when you and I talk that’s the time to throw in a cuss word or 2 to make your point. But in a business setting you should never let it happen“.
With that he fired off that jet engine and away we went.
Since the day I’ve studied the behavior of different people in a business setting and those that stay away for foul language always seem so much more intelligent.
Thanks to Udo’s frankness and straight talk, I was able to hone a communication skill that I may never have other wise known.
Now on to those few other words
I notice that on this group, The Angora Chronicles, that the language has become more and more crude and foul. Of course it’s so much better than many of other groups I see on Facebook. Would we not have a better time reading and interacting if the talk was a little less course and vulgar.
There is a time and a place for cussing. Sometimes in a story a relatively mild cuss word adds a certain flavor to things, but to me, that is the exception and not the rule.
A sign of the times in movies, television shows, songs and books is to see how vulgar we can make it. I know it makes me uncomfortable. I cringe when some words fly out over the air waves, as my wife and I sit and watch a movie. I often think, “why was that helpful to the story plot”.
I try, and I’m not always successful, in keeping my language at a proper level around kids and in proper company.
With this group I don’t want to act as the Cussing Police. It’s hard enough trying to watch things to reign in political talk and subjects that are off the mark.
How do y’all feel about this subject?
What crosses the line?
It would be nice if people were just respectful of others. We never know who is reading the things we say !
5 thoughts on “Can We Have A Real Frank Discussion Here Today ?”
Very good advice and it does reflect on our opinion of the speakers education level.
Just seems we are all letting go of every moral we were ever taught.
Udo taught you right, you learned well. My wife and I watch one hour of TV together every evening. Last night we tried a program we had never watched, but which is partially set at a place we knew 40 years ago. The show is clever, but we won’t be back. The sex is, truly, part of the story, but you can infer that without showing so much of it so directly, and the profanity is gratuitous. It does not advance the plot, and shows the character of the protagonist in a poor light.
It seems to be everywhere.
I commented on my FB post about an incident last year that happened.
We got Pastor last year. We have an old theater in town that has been refurbished and shows a lot of older movies.
We decided to have a movie night with a good number of church members getting together to support the movie theater and to welcome the Pastor his young family, including 3 preteen sons.
Forrest Gump was showing. How could we go wrong with that. Our congregation is primarily an older group. As many times as we had watched Forrest Gump we hadn’t picked up on how the language and subject matter was. Having 3 preteen boys that we vowed to watch over and mentor to as a congregation was a learning experience.
I agree. I have always said, “if you can’t make your point without cussing, it shows a lack of intelligence.”