On my jogging playlist is “Some Nights” by Fun. I love the line “What do I stand for?” Simple question, but one I don’t ask myself often enough. Note, I will be referring to perspectives rather than values, although largely intertwined.
Is what you see what you stand for? In middle high school I discovered my obsession for Saabs, which was a surprise to me since I couldn’t care two hoots about cars. I don’t think I saw a car though, I saw me, in a Saab, a dark green one. Once I made that discovery, well all I could see on the road were Saabs; they were in all the movies I watched and in all the newspaper ads, how weird? I have even kept an old newspaper clipping from those years that I will include if only to emphasise the impact this car made on my developing identity.
Sadly, Saab have closed their doors in Australia so I’m aiming for a Range Rover instead (totally pompous but gorgeous nonetheless).
Funnily enough, every time I worded Saab to anyone while speaking about cars, I always always received the same sort of semi electric shocked look, no matter the gender or age or combination of both, a silence followed by a little laugh or clearing of the throat representing an epiphany, “oh you’re one of thoooose people”. What people?? Soon I realised that everyone knew something about Saabs that I didn’t. What on earth was it? No-one seemed to like them and although I just couldn’t understand or accept that (it obviously wasn’t because of the way they looked, no way), I resigned myself to go down the more conventional path of a Ford Festiva followed by a Peugeot (still miss that Peugeot [moi moi]), to Jeep. Point? The Saab for me was a vision of my future and I swapped it for a Ford Festiva.
So, if we sometimes only see that which supports our perspective and ignore everything else and sometimes ignore our own perspective to see what everyone else does then how do we know what we stand for? If our perspectives are malleable, vulnerable and impressionable, where does that leave us? Should this concern us? I think not. I think the more impressionable a perspective the more reasonable the person. I know don’t want to be a stick in the mud after all, but where do we draw the line?
A long time ago, I let go of the Saab. It was a representation of me and funnily enough, letting go of the Saab to have a Festiva was another representation of me at that time. I certainly wasn’t a stick in the mud; in fact, I didn’t stick to anything (I know, I know, two different meanings of stick, just go with it).
Sometimes, just sometimes we should have a little stick, maybe be a tad sticky or stick a little in the mud, just sometimes. So what should we stand for? Stand for what represents us or more precisely, stand for what represents you. Now if you will excuse me, I’m going to look over some colour options on the Range Rover website.