I used to be young; now I am old. I used to be slim with thick reddish brown hair; now in my mid-60’s I am rather more portly and not completely secure on my pins and as the Scots say my brow is no longer smooth but “brent” (wrinkled) and my poll or wee pow (head) is frosty-white and gane beld (going bald). Hoot mon! My fayther wasna beld at 80 nor my grandfayter at 70. It must be that Islander blood from my mother’s side (lost of bald men on that side)!
I learned long ago that 1) being turned down for a date was part of life and sometimes turned out to be damn good luck. I used to weep when being spurned by a bonnie lassie. It seemed than when I was 16 and 17 and 18 and 19 that the world was almost over. My old grannie, said, “Och, dinna fash yerself. What is the lassie like?” I described the slender, smooth skinned sex goddess. I often shared a picture. And grannie would say, “Nae bad. But there are many fish in the sea. And in another thirty, forty or fifty years she will be a fat old woman like mysel’ if she is lucky or she will be deid (dead).” I remember being struck by her frankness but how right she was (Granny has been dead since 1984). Some of the young woman I pursued, I kissed I desired to possess are now dust. One beautiful, charming woman died at age 42 that was many years ago. Another beautiful woman -one of the most charming and beautiful woman I had ever known- was my wife’s first cousin. I was so happy at her wedding and looked forward to a long and happy relationship with her and her doctor husband. She said when she had children we would be her godparents But on her honeymoon, HONEY MOON, she began to feel a sharp pain in her right leg. Cancer. I won’t go into gruesome details but suffice it to say she was dead in two years and her last years were of great pain and suffering. We lost all contact with her grieving husband. I knew two women who were semi-finalists in beauty contests and when young were pursued by many men eagerly. I wasn’t considered good enough a catch for either one at the time so they both laughed off my attentions. Neither married (though one had a child out of wedlock). The first wrote to me for a while when I as in the military and I actually went back to visit her after a few years interval. She was only 24 but had aged tremendously in less than three years. She still had SOME sex appeal. I liked fact she didn’t smoke or do drugs. We went out to dinner and this young woman was pleasant company. But I noticed how much weight she had gained. She been health conscious and abstemious -usually drinking only water in her beauty pageant days and eating like a bird. She had been a shapely size 4 or 6. But now she was at least a 12. She at like horse and drank quite heavily. At one point she guffawed and her false teeth came out and fell in the soup which was quite embarrassing . It turned out her father (so she said) beat her an knocked out teeth. I took her home early wrote her a letter a reserved a flight for first flight off the island. She still wrote to me after that and called me on the phone tearfully saying she had been waiting for me and that I was the love of her life. She even said she would fly to X to spend a week with me so I could get to know her better and as she said “all the way this time.” Frankly, her eagerness scared me. I changed my phone number and left no forwarding address. I think I made a very good decision. She was desperate to marry and escape her father. But I easily could have succumbed in the early years to the siren call of Eros. But I remembered what my father taught me some women have a low lifetime batting average.
The other beauty who laughed at my advances, smoked, drank and gambled with abandon. I met her her casually after many years when she her thirties and she was already losing her figure and looks. By the time she was 60 she weighted over 300 pounds and had face of wizened crone. She was almost unrecognizable and a mutual friend said she was a horrible , mean embittered person who spent her last year gambling in Reno and Las Vegas casinos. I was lucky to have missed that boat!
Nothing ventured nothing gained. of course. Better to have loved and lost then never loved at all. Sometimes much better and luckier to have lost.
SO you will get turned down for dates and jobs for MANY reasons. Sometimes the market is very tight. Sometimes you are not a right fit.
I always had a simple back up plan: A) some savings B) a free and clear car C) enough food to make it to the end of the week or end of the month. Lost one car. Another car was totaled (not by me) that I owned free and clear. D) I always kept my credit solid .
It still is tough to get rejections for projects and jobs but that’s life.
It is tough to be denounced publically by the president of Cal State Bakersfield as an anti-immigrant racist English-only White Supremacist as I was some years ago. I still remember the crowd oohing. But I stood my ground and said my conscience was clear; my life story and career were clear. I support free public education for all. My parents were immigrants to America. My mother didn’t speak English when she came (my father did he grew up in the city). My wife was an immigrant. My son-in-law is an immigrant. My daughter in law is an immigrant. Everyone one in my family is multilingual and most speak Spanish (including me I am a certified Spanish teacher). I have taught and tutored immigrant youth and adults almost my entire adult life.
I have tutored (often pro bono) after school and on Saturdays college students and adults of all colors, genders and backgrounds for citizenship tests or college projects in history, English and Spanish. I have taught catechism in English and Spanish and have been the advisor of Spanish-speaking youth organizations. Everything I have stood for in education was to help students and to support academic rigor for all students at all levels so that many students could have access to college prep classes and AP classes in many subject areas. I have supported honesty in educational programs not subterfuges and hollow credits. I am not afraid the calumnies and lies of some people of the Far Left like the SPLC which claims to monitor “hate groups” but routinely engages in hatred and slander itself. I know. For anyone to say I am anti-Immigrant or anti-Spanish or English-only is not telling the truth because I favor a two-pronged approach to education
1) voluntary Dual immersion programs when possible including the teaching of community languages as native languages as part of the academic program and
2) where NOT FEASIBLE I repeat NOT FEASIBLE due to lack of materials and certified qualified teachers having strong sheltered ENGLISH IMMERSION and LITERACY classes for newcomers.
I have never opposed bilingual education or bilingualism in my entire life not even for five minutes. I have always supported waivers for Dual immersion programs and even voluntary native language academies where English is taught as a foreign language. I know teachers of such academies in Spain and Scotland and think the work they do is outstanding. But these programs have high academic rigor and all students are tested for competencies in English as well as target language.