Sorry about bringing up clowns again, so soon, and outside of Halloween Season, and it’s not like I even love clowns all that much! And I’m not even saying that I am obsessed with them, but even so — obsessions don’t understand your notions of there being appropriate times or places. In fact, an obsession wouldn’t comprehend the word “inappropriate” at all, or “creepy” for that matter. And neither do I!
Anyway, I saw this beautiful gif the other day, while I was living on the internet as I do, and I became mesmerized with a thought. Mr. Rogers was a good man, a saint, and is very definitely a saint in our Sneerholic pantheon. He represents all that can be good in the world and is without blame. You know how we feel about him. On the other hand, clowns are commonly known to be evil, I guess, in these modern times. They are frightening and often up to no good. ALLEGEDLY. There are plenty of kind clowns out there, clowning for the sick and in parades, but every single one of us suspects their motives. Each of us wonders what possibly-literal skeletons are in the closets of their murderhouses. Thanks, John Wayne Gacy!
I always thought you seemed like a pretty nice guy. Sure, you ARE a comedian, and that means you run a high risk of actually being a truly terrible human being and any day now a massive scandal might erupt, tarnishing your name for the rest of time. But for now, right now, and until further notice, I have always thought of you as a swell guy. I think you are a good person.
Although I am a devout disciple of Mr. Rogers, the kindest, gentlest soul to grace the world with his presence in our lifetimes, I am only human. I am flawed. And I strive every day to not be 100% horrible. I really try to be only half horrible at most. I swear! I even read Mr. Rogers’ quotes every single day because I have a Daily Mr. Rogers’ Quotes Calendar! But on days when I am struggling, I have friends who help me. Or sometimes they encourage me to be awful. But on the day of this comic presented to you, AlexT was in a beatific mood and bestowed upon me (and all of you now too) magnanimous wisdom. Because he is nice.
Sometimes I think of this advice on my own, when I am alone in my struggle. Sometimes I even give this advice to other people, when I am at my best. And now you can print out this comic and hang it next to your mirror at home, and look at it every day as a reminder to be good.
Fred McFeely Rogers was born on March 20, 1928. He was the star of the smash hit children’s television program, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Mr. Rogers wasn’t a children’s show host, or a character designed to attract viewers. He was just his honest self: an angelic being sent to earth who didn’t like what he saw being offered on television and so decided to do something about it. He is a constant source of inspiration to anyone who has taken the time to watch his show or read his quotes. In fact, when I am deeply mired in the blues concerning the state of current events, I can watch one of his shows, or even just remind myself that Mr. Rogers ever existed, and I remember that there can be things in the world that are just purely good.
I encourage us all to be more like Mr. Rogers. Not more like he was in mannerism, but more like he was in essence. Celebrate him today (and at least once a week from here on out) by printing out the page below, and watching episodes wherever you can find them. It’s okay if you skip over the Land of Make Believe, though. That part really was for children to learn simple lessons. The rest of his show, though, still carries important truths for anyone at any age.
I’m glad that I enjoy things as much as I do. There are two things that I love as an adult that are frequently enjoyed by children: learning and Pokémon. The thing is, whenever I learn something new my brain can’t help but apply it to Pokémon.
I recently listened to a business audiobook. I was consumed with one of the concepts in the book and how it applied to Pokémon. They talked about the hedgehog versus the fox. The former is of a single mind, and the latter is essentially scatterbrained. The book argued that the hedgehog is the one who can enjoy great success, while the fox won’t ever get there despite his many efforts.
I don’t have enough business experience to reject or accept their argument for corporations. I’ve been playing Pokémon with great intensity since 1998 and I’m really torn on their conclusion. Perhaps most importantly, my reaction is: it depends. The part that bothers me isn’t that it depends, but short of results-oriented-thinking, I can’t tell what it depends on.