So you can read my books

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Across cultures and time, honor and manliness have been inextricably tied together.

If we take even a cursory look at history, honor pops up over and over again as a central theme in literature and life.

The epic poems of Homer are primarily about honor and man’s quest to achieve and maintain it.

If you read Shakespeare’s plays with open eyes, you’ll find that honor and manhood take center stage as reoccurring themes.

 If you were to ask someone, “What is honor?” you’d likely be answered with furrowed brows and head scratches.

To define honor, as with pornography, with mere words is hard.  But you know it when you see it. 

Or do you?

Honor=integrity is the point to which the definition of honor has evolved ... at least to me.

Has honor become unnecessary and irrelevant in a society

 where, left to ourselves, we need not behave consistently, let alone be consistently well behaved?

Honor must be built on solid bedrock, and that is why it is fading from memory.

Post-modernism is distrustful of anything that claims to be universal or permanent.

H ow virtuous are we?
O nce gone, integrity is hard to reclaim
N ever soil your good name
O nly love creates true honor
R espect all to create a world of honor 

(with thanks to SOURCE OF INSPIRATION )

As a concept, honor has certainly dropped out of sight in modern society.

To me, Honor is a Virtue, like Loyalty, or Courage, and as such possesses inherent value.

But not only that, it is the supreme Virtue and towers over the others because it provides a framework for behavior

that can serve as a guide in situations fraught with uncertainty, peril or temptation.

The lone man stranded on a deserted isle has no need for honor.

But as soon as men interact with others, the need for it begins to arise and swiftly grows urgent.

The need for fairness, for civility, respect and trust manifests itself, and this need is satisfied (or left unfulfilled) via behavior and action.

The honorable man acts a certain way not because of how he feels,

but because he recognizes it is the right thing to do, and his reason allows him to conclude this.

After my two emails yesterday to Freddie, my supervisor, he emailed me that he would talk to the lab tech's supervisor --

but he has a supercillious attitude towards everybody outside the lab.

In fact, the lab departments of Lifeshare belong to a completely separate entity known as Systems.

Some years back, the lab supervisor saw the lion and tiger puppets in Khaki uniforms in the back seat of my car

that I use periodically to visit old customers who are in the hospital or their children,

and I cheer them up with terrible jokes and worse voice-throwing.

Their names are Joshua Lamb (the lion) and Solomon Cain (the usually wise tiger who has a problem with temper.)

He visited Sandra, my best friend, when she still had a store

 and sneered that they were child-molesting aids I used -- he did it in front of her customers.

He is a judge in the Miss America Pageants here, and at the time her business catered to beauty contestants.

She could not afford to offend him.

If you hadn't guessed: He is a bully, too.

She couldn't afford to ask him to leave, so she left the store and stayed away until he was gone.

Sandra called me and hotly told me NEVER to apologize to him when hospital calls necessitated me awakening him.

And yes, he had made fun of me for doing so at that time as well.

So I do not hold out much hope for what Freddie will accomplish with talking to that man.

There were times the lab supevisor came to work years ago on the weekend with alcohol heavy on his breath,

and I did not report him. He seemed competent to do his work is the reason why.

I told Freddie at the time about what the lab supervisor had said to Sandra in her store in front of customers.

He, too, got hot and looked for him in the lab, but he was not there.

I counseled restraint since the lab is the favored child of the Medical Head of Lifeshare --

and they have already down-sized our department since we are considered low level, easily replacable personnel.

Last year, Lifeshare was considering eliminating my supervisor's position when they reduced Product Management here in Lake Charles.

Upon my interview with those deciding our fates, I did not say why I should be kept,

I instead listed all the things my supervisor had done beyond the call of duty,

even so far as risking his life and health by staying at the center through five hurricanes. 

(I knew because I volunteered those times to stay with him.)

I then showed printed index cards on what studies said were the qualites of excellent, hard to come by, supervisors

and listed how my supervisor fulfilled all of them.

I said all jobs had dignity but few jobs were noble. What my supervisor and I did were noble jobs,

and I was proud to work with him and for Lifeshare.

We both kept our jobs.

But can good men keep their honor
in a world where it is not valued?

And the mysterious gunman has cursed blood -
great, now everyone will think I copied from PENNY DREADFUL


  1. Sometimes (quite often) is does feel as if honour, integrity, compassion, empathy and their cousins have been devalued.
    At the end of the day I have to live with myself. Which, since integrity is important to me, means nurturing it - and keeping it.

  2. Child-molesting aids?? What a depraved individual to even think such things ...

    And as far as integrity/honor is concerned, it is doing the right thing when no one is watching. Sounds like the sort of thing you would do, Roland.

    And like EC says, you have to be able to live with yourself. I bet those individuals you speak of 'cannot.'

    I despair of most people at the best of time. Keep your chin up.

  3. Elephant's Child:
    At the end of the day it is true: the face we see looking back at us should be one we like and are at ease with -- integrity and compassion make that easier, right?

    Yes, the lab supervisor projects a superior air with everyone and looks down on most, dropping acid humor remarks.

    I am uncomfortable in his presence as I sense an unwholesomeness within him.

    Thanks for believing in me, friend.

    I depair of so many people who bruise their lives as they mangle the lives of others around them.

  4. I've found that the ones who accuse usually have the problem inherent themselves and want to divert attention to someone else.

    I have done a skip-level reporting of a manager, and had half the office upset with me standing up for my principles.

    I like to think I live by the 'knight in shining armor' tradition (even as a maiden) Keep to your honor, it's likely ingrained, Roland.

  5. D.G.:
    There have been similar whispers about the lab supervisor from a few people at my center. I refrain from comment. I try never to tear down at the center.

    Sometimes if you report to a direct supervisor or to the next link in the chain of command, it merely gets buried for distaste of taking unwanted action. And as you found by skipping a level, you are criticized for doing so because NOW the dirty laundry is out for THEIR supervisors to notice!

    It has become ingrained -- and I have the bruises from unwinnable fights to prove it. Ouch!

    :-) Good to know a fellow "Knight" in somewhat dented armor.

  6. Honor and duty are such a rare thing now. People want to do just enough to get by and that's it.
    I hope something good comes of this, for your sake. I know you are a person of honor, and to put it bluntly, you don't need that guy's crap.

  7. Alex:
    Yes, honor and duty are rare things now. "Good Enough" seems to be the new mantra for a lot of people.

    Also this has become an ill society in that atrocious subjects are acceptable for humor these days --

    and vicious, demeaning talk is considered O.K. to engage in so long as the target is powerless to defend him or herself.

    That lab supervisor has a position where he can be vicious without someone to rein him in.

    Thanks for believing in me. It means a lot. :-)

    Maybe my books and audiobooks will take off enough to support myself. Cross your fingers.

  8. I think honour is something you learn from your parents, or whatever good role model you have in your life. Generally if you have that you are going to be okay. But it seems a lot of people nowadays grow up without a sense of true honour.

    At least what *I* consider to be honour. There are many interpretations ...

  9. Roland my dear -- I read your replies to yesterday's post before I read this one, and what I said there applies here: What that lab supervisor said to you in front of witnesses is actionable, meaning he can be sued. But if the incident happened a few years ago, the statute of limitations is likely up. On the other hand, if he has said or written, even in just an email, anything similar about you or someone else recently, the law still holds that he can be sued.

    Yes I know, it's highly unlikely that you would or could sue the S.O.B. But please don't underestimate the law or the possibility that you could legally take him down if he ever goes to such an extreme again.

  10. Trisha F:
    Yes, I think you are right. Today we have immature children raising children -- and the result blare from the headlines, printed in blood of murdered innocents.

    Yes, what he said was actionable. But the witnesses were beauty pageant contestants who knew he could ruin their chances and a woman whose livehood could be ruined by him.

    He felt pretty safe in being vicious (a trait that comes naturally to him -- which is why his lab tech feels secure in continuing in her bullying with me.)

    People like that construct a cold world for themselves that eventually become a prison -- but in the meantime, people in their lives are bruised.

    Thanks for being my friend.

  11. Honor (integrity) is of the utmost importance to me. But I too have witnessed dishonorable behavior at work that has affected me deeply. I try to turn the other cheek though it's a challenge. Sounds like you are handling your coworker well, as frustrating as that can be.

    Thank you for stopping by my blog. I have fallen off in blogging and visiting author blogs, but I was just thinking about you and wondering how you were doing.

  12. Hi Roland .. many should read this post - to better understand, if they can the ways of the world.

    Honour and I'd Respect for others in all things and to all people .. this was an uncomfortable read .. and bullies prevail for however long they can survive that way ..

    Just a very good post to write about Honour and Integrity .. cheers Hilary

  13. Jennifer:'
    I, too, try to turn the other cheek -- but I only have four of them! Sorry you have seen bullying in your work world, too.

    As Gandhi wrote: the tyrants seem to win for a time, but they always lose in the end, always.

    I am glad you think this post was good despite being uncomfortable to read.

    Thanks for being my friend. :-)