Site Meter Elsie's Space: Who Me?
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Location: New England, United States

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Friday, May 18, 2007

Who Me?

Last night a friend called.

"Can I ask your professional opinion about something?"

"Sure." (Who, me? Am I flashin' back to the 80's?)

She proceeds to ask her question. It's more about the politics of business than the mechanics. I answer as best I can.

"I knew you were the right person to ask. You always do the right thing."

We chatted a while, said our goodbyes, and of course I got to thinking. "You always do the right thing." Sound virtuous, don't I? But I don't feel that way. I certainly try to do the right thing. I suppose I almost always do. Doing the right thing usually feels good. But there are times when I don't want to do the right thing. I want to say "the hell with it" and do exactly what I want to do.

When you do the right thing, even when you don't want to, perhaps only because you're concerned that God is watching, does it even count? And when you think certain things but do the right thing by not acting on those certain things, does it count against you for even thinking them?

And who is it exactly who decides what is right?

I'm tempted to do the wrong thing just to find out. Is that wrong or right? I'm not sure. I do know that I don't always do the right thing. I only try.

8 Comments:

Anonymous Jack in Paris said...

Huh?

5:21 PM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Jack, my sentiments exactly.

6:49 PM  
Blogger MaryB said...

Well, Elsie, that's all we really can do, isn't it - try to do the right thing. And yeah, I often do the right thing when I reeeeeaaaaaalllly want to do the wrong one, just because. You've gone very theological/kinda metaphysical here and it's too early on a Saturday for me to sort it out. But. I do know what you mean (no "huh?" about it). We'll discuss over wine and chowder sometime! (Yes, please.)

9:20 AM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Mary, you're on! Wine and chowder (with a few clamcakes thrown in for good measure) it is. Summer's just around the bend. Beat that city heat, and come on up!

12:31 PM  
Anonymous Winston said...

Sounds good! Can I join y'all for wine and chowder? And clamcakes? Maybe some lobster bites as well?

This could get deep very quickly. Who determines what the "right thing" really is? Are we talking "right" in a legal sense? Or moral? Religious? Whose religion? See what I mean... The best any of us can do is to try to adhere to what we have learned over the years and hope that is good enough to keep us out of permanent trouble. That sounds almost like a copout, but works for me far better than "God is watching".

You are so right about the feel-good feeling of doing the right thing, whatever that is. The dirty old man side of me also says that it can feel good to do the wrong, the impulsive, the wicked little thing on occasion...

8:30 AM  
Blogger MaryB said...

Elsie - I see a little trip outside NYC for me this summer! I'll have my girl (um, that'd be me) talk to your girl (guessin' that'd be you) and compare calendars. And Winston, if you can get up here, we'll have enough fish-stuff for ya'. (And wine. Let's not forget the wine.)

12:41 PM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Winston, yes, absolutely join us... and I like being part of "y'all" -- don't think I've ever been called that! Dirty old man? I don't think so. I think you're just one of the bad boys in a good guy kind of way.

Mary, I'll check my schedule, too. This is going to be fun!

1:18 PM  
Blogger Liz said...

I wrote a comment on this I'm sure I did! And now I can't remember what I wrote ...

11:34 AM  

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