I was at the pool with my friend Isobel yesterday. Isobel is my neighbor who gives me the goose eggs. She's an operating room nurse, and works four days a week, including one night every six days. It's pretty grueling some weeks, and she has a bad shoulder from a car accident she had when she was young - so she and I go to the pool a lot together. Anyhow, I was talking about seeing an article about very young girls getting streaks in their hair, and how I was shocked and thought it was completely ridiculous, and she said "Well, I put streaks in my daughter's hair last year."
Of course, no matter how great your convictions are about something, when your good friend (and ride, I might add, to the pool) contradicts you, you back-pedal. At least I do.
Me - "Oh, but that was just wash-out streaks, wasn't it?"
Isobel - "No, I got the permanant kind."
Me - "Oh. Well. I'm sure it was very cute. I bet your daughter was pleased."
Isobel - thoughtfully - "Yes, but the hairdresser said not to do it again, because it burned her hair. Chemicals aren't good for young children's hair."
Me, trying to find the right pedal - "You're so right. That's what I thought when I read that article."
Isobel - "Now she wants streaks all the time. I think next time I'll get the kind you spray on. You gave me a good idea."
Me - sinking under water.
I suppose there are some things that you can back-pedal on. The streaks in the kids hair didn't seem so bad when Isobel confessed to giving in to her daughters wishes. After all, next time she's just getting the spray on kind.
Other convictions are harder to give up. I mentioned that I despised our new president for being a hypocrite to a guy in my gym. He'd been asking me what I thought of "Sarko". I said, "He's a hypocrite. Here he is saying he wants to help the lower income levels, and he doesn't do a thing about social housing. He promised to build new housing, and so far, nothing."
The man said to me, "It's hard to get the towns to agree - I wouldn't want a social housing development to be built near my house."
Me -" Why not? Just because someone can't afford an expensive house doesn't mean he's a bad person! I wouldn't mind a bit. As a matter of fact, I'd be right there when the people moved in to see if they needed anything."
Man in gym - "Yes, but they're trouble makers. Look at the ghettos and the problems they had last year."
Me - If I had to live in a ghetto, I would probably make trouble too."
Well, that conversation got nowhere, but I wasn't backing down from that conviction - that everyone deserves a place to live, near good transporation, free education, and job opportunities. What they do with that, after it's offered, is up to them. But most people, I'm sure, would make the most of their opportunities. I just don't think most people realize that.
And it's much more important than kids getting streaks intheir hair. I wonder if my daughter wants streaks? (the spray in kind...)