Sunday, July 4, 2010

July 4th: Jack Nicholson On Freedom

Yes, it's that time again.
I am a creature of habit, and regular readers of Dojo Rat will know that this short video from "Easy Rider" is my favorite statement for "Independence Day."

I have had reason lately to reflect on the aspect known as Freedom. I never quite fit with the "in crowd" when I was a kid. I avoided team sports in favor of individual sports like wrestling and gymnastics. I opted for wilderness survival and mountain climbing training. I never had the perfect girl or perfect car in high school. Instead, I had old hot rods that always had to be worked on, and relationships that matched. And through that process of growing up, I found out what independence was. I lived in the woods. When my friends were getting married and having kids, I was getting my Black Belt.
I have seen friends, and yes, family members slip into comfortable consumerism. They have sold their soul to have that perfect car and trophy wife. They put the monkey suit on and shave every morning and drive through miles of stalled traffic to work at a shit job. They are marketing a version of the American dream that they barely believe in themselves. They have mid-life crises. They have broken marriages.
I'm the luckiest guy in the world. My wife loves me. I still live in the woods, but I have better tools to accommodate that now.
I have never been on an airplane in my life. Might have to someday I guess, but why break a perfect record now.
Every day I get up and decide what I want to do. I take the time to do Tai Chi or other martial arts before I go to work. I only work for people that pay well and respect me. My truck is ten years-old but runs great. I've managed farms and had lots of dogs over the years.
And now, through this technology, I have met people from all over the world. We are all connected, in part because of our love of martial arts. While we are all eclectic individuals, we are social animals and share our lives and ideas.
"The strength of the Pack is the Wolf, but the strength of the Wolf is the Pack"

Celebrate your Freedom.


jc said...

thanks for that post....

Sean C. Ledig said...

Great post, DR! You've really got me thinking about a lot of things in my own life.

Yeah, I never got much into team sports, either. While other guys were playing football or baseball, I was running track, boxing, lifting weights and doing martial arts.

I've got a paying job I have to finish, but I'll be reflecting a lot of what you said when I'm finished.

ThomasD said...

Nice, sir.