Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Way of the Jimmy: Not Just A Cult Favorite!

And... I'm back. I figure I'm kinda wordy, so I'll shorten my stuff or post additional blogs. Which, some people may enjoy.

Anyways... onto the next question.

"How do you identify 'your people?' How is this identity formed by the considerations of ethnos, nomos, mythos, archon, and techne."

Well, my identity is something that I've long pondered myself. My people, specifically my family, is complex. We believe in strong family bonds, and yet, my parents are not on great terms with their family. Yet, their own failures only strengthened a new beginning. I was taught family dinners and supporting each other was important. I've taken classes in ROTC and have been trained on how to follow, and lead, but I prefer to avoid any responsibility because it tips balances and scales. I love to write, but I'd rather have a career in psychology and talk to people.

Ethnos is a little challenging because there is no specific way to measure it. I am open-minded, and love reading and writing. Through this, I hunt down old books, participate in learning everything I can get my hands on, and strive to enter new worlds at every opportunity. I like to think that music defines me, and that my genre of music is broad, like my goals and ambitions. An example of this would be that I've gotten my hair cornrowed and I wear slinkies as a sign of fashion style. This holds no relative meaning to nobody but me, and I enjoy this.

This identity is tragically not formed by nomos in any way. This is partially because my family cut all ties, in a sense, to create new ones. I realize that I am the first, as far as I know, to go to Clemson, to enter into Psychology, and to strive towards writing. This can be challenging at times having no specific help or advice through family, but I have support and that is good enough for me.

Mythos is actually a motivator for me. My mother and father aren't specifically bound by standards or roles. Both of my parents cook, both of my parents participated in raising my brothers and I, and each one has had various backgrounds in government jobs, traveling, making new friends, so on, and so forth. They have taught me that I should try to pave my own story, and to make a difference in my own way.

Archon is another one that is challenging. If you were to research me, you probably wouldn't find very much. It is true that I have a MySpace and a FaceBook account, but if you were to view it, you wouldn't find very much. I don't have any albums of music or photos posted. I don't have any stories or tales, and honestly, I would much rather be making the new adventures and creating stories than to be documenting and archiving tales of exaggerated feats. My life is something others have to choose to participate in. It isn't enough for my "friends" to sit on the sideline and comment on it.

Last, for techne, this is a bit problematic. All I own are my personal belongings. All I have is between my home and here at Clemson. And all I that I will leave behind are in the process of becoming "something". If you were to travel to Green Sea Floyds, you would find that I was a Battalion Commander for two years, and the only one who attained the level of Cadet Colonel. Unfortunately, this was in a school where my graduating class was eighty-one, so my legacy doesn't really live on.

Overall, I am not really complicating, I'm really simple. Complex insight may be required, but it's only to look at different angles. Why I get there isn't as important as how I get there.

In the meantime, stay tuned for next week's posting and enjoy this picture from my past. Not many people get to see it.


The Way of Jimmy: It's a Pyramid!

So the assignment to tackle this week is actually something up my alley, thankfully.


"Imagine that I am hosting exchange students who have never visited the U.S. What particular things about "your people" (your culture - national, regional, local, familial) would you need to explain during their visit - and how?"

Basically, I would inform the students about three specific topics: Morals, Ethics, and Laws. Specifically, these three topics can be looked at as a pyramid.

On the bottom of it, you have morals. These are on an intrapersonal level; only family, relatives, and friends are affected by this. Is eating together for dinner important? Are group activities such as family reunions and get-togethers a necessity? What kind of virtues and values are worked towards, and what do they tie into? For example, is missing a family outing frowned upon? Or is having a streak of independence a sign of approval?

Above the base, you have ethics. This level specifically is the on-start of the interpersonal level; more so, ethics on the standards of the general public. Like the word itself, these are the grey area... or is it gray? Regardless, they are the actions and words we use to interact that may be encouraged or frowned upon. Is helping an elderly across the street acceptable? What level of sexual innuendo can you engage with the opposite sex before it becomes inappropriate? Sarcasm and the level of humor is something that needs to be adjusted regularly because each individual within a culture operates on different standards.

Topping the pyramid of course, is law. Last, but not least, this is interpersonal but unlike morals and ethics, law is definite. It is final. And it is unchangeable. What is the drinking age in this country compared to where the students stay from? Are certain drugs and activities legal here compared to their home? What is the driving age, and are there any curfews restricting traveling abroad or locally?

Of course, this information isn't supposed to be filed in a PowerPoint presentation. Mostly, I would communicate this in two days easily. Family interaction, activities, bingo. Morals are covered. Setting times, meetings, and appointments, while allowing submersion into the culture by their self, it's liberating and guided. Ethics are up to date. And last, outings, informative snippets of things that are and aren't allowed, and careful warnings ahead of time at the right time would be done as they occur. Laws complete, checklist secure.

Because this is long and I don't want to bore all of you reading, I'll end it here and give anyone who needs one an intermission.


If not, continue on over to the next one...