Last night as myself and my comrades, a group of close friends that gets together regularly to sit around our dinning room table which we have dubbed, “The Knights of the Round,” a conversation got brought up that leads me to my next blog topic, Choice! As we were sitting around, drinking a few beers, sharing our days and discussing the misfortunes of others, one of the Knights was sharing a story in which he stated, “You don’t understand, he doesn’t have any choice.” I then, in typical Jess fashion, pulled out my soap box and as I began to preach, was told, to quell myself. I for a second wanted to continue on, but thought, you know what, discretion is the better part of valor, I’ll save this and make it the next topic of my blog.
Which leads me to today, the here and now, so please prepare yourself as I pull out my soap box once again, to discuss with you, choice and my pet peeve reaction when someone says, “well, they don’t have a choice.”
So, what is choice? I feel like I am again in High School, about to compose some sort of constructive argument assignment and am starting with a definition, however, I do feel that it is important. Choice, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, is:
An act of choosing between two or more possibilities.‘the choice between good and evil’
mass noun The right or ability to choose.‘I had to do it, I had no choice’
A range of possibilities from which one or more may be chosen.‘you can have a sofa made in a choice of forty fabrics’
A thing or person which is chosen.‘this disk drive is the perfect choice for your computer’
Now, I’m going to pause a minute there, and again, please make sure to read the second sample sentence “I had to do it, I had no choice.”
This in my opinion (which is why you read this stupid thing anyway), is in direct contradiction to what this word means! You always have a choice! In fact, the idea of free will and making choices is engrained in us from the start and is in almost facet of everything we do, from creation stories to the day to day humdrum of the work day! If you are religious, some believe that free will and choice are given to us, these are gifts from God. If you are not of a religious background, then you already subscribe to the thought that we are responsible for our actions, thoughts, words, and, you guessed it, choices!! Saying, “I don’t have a choice,” is a short cut to thinking and promotes laziness. Again, and I might sound like a broken records, YOU ALWAYS HAVE A CHOICE!! The choices you have made in life have lead up to you uttering that stupid fucking phrase! Perhaps, instead of sounding as if you’d like the whole world to give you a hankie, wipe your tears and pat you on the head, issuing a silent reassurance that things are ok, you should reflect on the past choices that lead you to where you are today!
This leads me to the gentler or motivating portion of this rant: I am, and have always been, a firm believer in free will, choice and knowing that oneself is solely responsible for oneself. You my friend, are and should feel always, that you are invincible! It is with having a go get ’em, pull yourself up by your bootstraps, mentality that has gotten me past all of those “had no choice,” moments! I could now throw at you all the colloquially phrases usually used in motivational speeches, however, I’m currently deficit of any cute animals to put on a poster and share so that my snark is more well received. It is true though, we are only as strong as we push ourselves. When things get tough, the tough get going. It’s more than acceptable to be cocky when you know you got this.
If you are reading this and now wrinkling your nose because I have in some way stuck a nerve (too bad so sad, I ain’t gunna pat your head, though I might give ya a hankie), know that the PSA here is, if you are unhappy and want to use the shortcut to thinking phrase, “I can’t, I don’t’ have any other choice,” know that shit don’t fly and someone needs to be there to say, “hey brah, stop being a pussy, you got this.” So go carpi deim some shit and I’ll catch ya on the flip side!