“Thank You for Lettin’ Me Be Myself … Again!”

Happy Friday, All!  And if you’ll quickly review the title of this piece, you’ll see I’m still carrying that “attitude of gratitude” and trying to make it contagious!!  So, here’s a hearty TGIF from the Caribbean … Costa Rica … right close to Puerto Viejo!  I’ve even gotten used to riding my e-bike through town and further out and back amidst the ever-present “roads under repair”!!  If you stay, you gotta love it … or at least get used to it!!  (Wednesday, I rode my e-bike to Bri Bri and back … picked up a much-needed blender, and even got some chontaduros!)

So, I just wanted to be sure to illustrate that I do appreciate a lot of folks even though it seems like I “complain” a lot.  It’s not complaining for me, not only as a social scientist and activist, but it’s “motivational writing” … often referred to as journalism.  I want to elicit a response … an intellectual one that may lead to learning, growth, and even healing!  We’ve been conditioned to some degree to protect ourselves by hurting others … BEFORE they hurt “you”!  Not a healthy state of mind for individuals …  Here in Puerto Viejo where I have a long-term mailbox, do my business and shopping, and rent a small “casita”, I’ve managed to make a little “home” for myself!  As I cruise around taking care of my business and health needs, I encounter different local people of which there is a wide variety!  Naturally, some like me, and some don’t seem to though I haven’t intentionally tried to provoke anyone other than being “myself”.  But, I do request AND show respect in my interactions with others!  Still, and that’s cool, some people like the way I “roll” and actually tell me to keep writing and trying to offer alternatives to negativity while still others don’t like my style … for one reason or another!  I don’t have ANY time to worry about that!  So, back to that “Thank You!” to those who unbegrudgingly “let me be myself”!

I have to give my parents recognition for molding me in a way that taught me not only self-respect but respect for others.  Transparency in relationships is so underrated that I can hardly believe my eyes and ears sometimes.  Now, as I’ve mentioned before, people come to Talamanca Costa Rica for various reasons.  But most people come to enjoy the emphasis on eco-tourism.  Others come to shake off old demons and maybe even create a new “person”.  As a fairly private person, I avoid the chatter of folks who don’t seem to exercise the same transparency that my parents taught me.  I discovered that as I worked nearly like a slave on some jobs where I wasn’t given room to be creative that they too – corporate monsters – appreciated my transparency.  Not only was I a perfectionist who was at work on time every day, but once I got there, I tried to infect the environment with humility, transparency, hard work, and honesty!  It’s the way I roll because I really can’t do the negativity thing much anymore.  It’s a waste of my precious time.

If you’ve been with me and Educational Excellence for a while, I hold no “punches” so to speak.  In other words, I’m not here to “do YOUR dance” because I’ve got my own that has been working well for over fifty years!  I write about and offer constructive feedback when possible to anyone and everyone.  This is a state of mind that follows transparency …  You don’t have to remember which lie you told to whom!  You just “ROLL”!  It’s a spiritual thing that I had to become accustomed to.  It’s kind of like that “hedge of protection” that is talked about in the Bible.  Needless to say, if your fun and foolishness involve disrespecting ME … you need to go back to YOUR drawing board in order to effectively and transparently communicate with me.  Keep in mind, I don’t require anyone to communicate with me or show me love.  There are enough people starting with my parents who have shown me (and continue to!) much love!!  So, why would I allow some “crackpot” to disrespect me?!?  I’m not that desperate for fake friendship or “love” even if it comes from my ONLY offspring!  Keep that bullsh@t in your circle(s) and away from me!  Some people can’t be trusted and don’t even trust themselves while they are trying to convince YOU to trust them!!  Enter “transparency” to save the day.  This is not only true amongst us “peons” on the micro level but also with these “wanna-be Rambos” disguised as leaders running and ruining the world with their toxicity!!  Now, we have the “Dilbert” cartoonist coupled with Elon Musk who both actually advocate “staying away from blacks …” freakin’ morons!  Just what the United States of America needs today.  Remember, Elon paid over $100 million dollars in a lawsuit filed against him and Tesla after an employee of color sued his grimy a$$ for permitting racist hatred toward “blacks” to be written on the walls and stalls as well as spouted in HIS plant!!  WTF!  Some people just don’t care …

It’s the “money” thing that makes people “think” that they are above the law!  It’s infectious, too!  It’s also very dangerous for “the home of the brave … land of the free” …  Complete … don’t make me say it … okay … malarkey!  What’s my point?  Thank you to those who can see my purpose, and acknowledge my goals which in my opinion are pretty positive ones!  I’m just trying to shine my light on some obscure yet obvious topics!  Being transparent and kind, truthful even, is NOT a weakness.  It is indeed the cement that solidifies good, healthy relationships … on ALL levels!


John I. Cook, Director

Thank you for reading!

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