I remember one of my dearest friends first ever trip to the West Coast to visit my wife and I like it was yesterday. She was from a small southern town. We did the usual tourist thing of taking her to the local landmarks and attractions. We decided that it was time for dinner and we decided to take her to our favorite sushi spot. The look on her face was priceless. ” Sushi”! “Ain’t that the raw stuff”? “Some of it is raw, but a lot of it is cooked”. “Just try it, we’ll start you off slow” I said. We arrive at the sushi bar and as promised, we order her a Philadelphia roll to start her off. She looks at the roll like it’s some alien from another planet with three heads. She proceeds to undo the sushi makers work by unrolling it and eat it like it was a side dish of rice, cream cheese, and cucumber. After a few bites and miscues with the chopsticks, she began to like it. “This is really good”!
Being from a small town has its perks. Everything has an intimate feel to it. Everyone knows everyone to some degree. It’s like an extended family. The way of life in the community is just understood. There is a protocol on how things are done. Mama and Daddy did it this way so this is the way its going to be done. No questions asked.
That’s also the downside of being from a small town. You can’t tell people anything. They’re minds are so stuck in their ways. Anything that looks different from what they know is just dramatizing. I have never really understood why people are so afraid to expand outside of what they know. They just seem content to just roll with the status quo, be miserable doing the same old thing day in and day out, and happy never leaving the confines of where their minds have had them stuck for years. They are content with being virgins to life experience.
They’re afraid they may just like what’s beyond what they see and have known for years. They may go out and experience something that is better than what they know and may never want to go back to what they knew before, thus making some of the people in their community jealous. They are becoming too radical. Radical to what, life? Some people don’t want to live their lives status quo to your community. They may want to experience a different way of living or thinking without you giving them a mean, dirty look. Should they be shunned for that?
Everyone gets one life to live. There are no sequels. Instead of doing things like mama and daddy did it, carve your own path. Having a closed mind keeps your opportunities closed. Once you open up your mind, the doors of life open you up to all new opportunities imaginable for you to be more what your community thinks. It opens you up to the real world.