• David Unger PhD

Alphabet Series - Q is for Questionable

My last post about Porta Potties was questionable and you will have to judge whether this one also falls into that category as well. There are just some things that fall out of socially acceptable bounds, and porta potties may part of that grouping. But, when something is of questionable taste what does that really mean? I am guessing it has something to do with proper decorum and the social etiquette that we were taught. I suspect that just since you were taught something doesn't mean you subscribe to it.

You may recall that last week I talked about the egalitarian nature of porta potties. Even though my mother would have enjoyed a conversation about egalitarianism, I don't think she would have approved of my bringing this particular subject up at the dining room table. But, then my job as a growing youth was to challenge some of those norms and extend the social boundaries.That is not to say my Porta Potty conversation would be moving things forward.

I have written before about "too much." What I contend is that if someone's behavior is "too much" for you, it means it rests outside of what you would do. What you do is not too much. Your boundaries of behavior are set and those behaviors outside of your realm can become over the line. According to you.

And, so it is with questionable taste. I did take a moment to reflect on whether I really wanted to write about Porta Potties when I could have just as easily chosen any number of other P words. So, while it was questionable, in that I questioned it, it was not too much. You might have questioned it as well and deemed it of poor taste. It was probably too much for my mother who I don't think ever wrote or talked about the subject. But, if she were here she would give me that "You're a naughty boy" look but there would be little glint in her eye that showed that while what I did was not proper it was kinda good that I pushed the boundary. Kinda good. But not really.

I am not taking up the banner for more questionable behavior (well, maybe a little). If anything I am calling for taking a moment to question your actions before you take them. Especially the ones you think may be over the line.

Some people ask themselves "What would Jesus do?" while others ask "What would be the most loving thing I could do?" I often ask "What is the worst thing that can happen?" While I can't really answer that, I can take an educated guess about how things might play out if they went south. If I can deal with that possibility I at least know I can manage the downside.

But what about the upside?

I don't know how this works for you, but for me when I extend my boundaries I usually feel good about it. There is risk involved, and it could go south, but I like it when I take risks. Usually I don't take big ones, but whenever I gather up my courage to push myself into the unknown I give myself a pat on the back. I have written about being foolish and sometimes questionable behavior can be too foolish and there will be consequences of note. You never know with the unknown. But I can usually bet that if I take a chance, and have thought about it before I did, I usually feel good regardless of the outcome. I may make a mistake, but I didn't make the mistake of not trusting me. When I don't trust myself is when I often feel the worst about how I am conducting my life.

I would hope your batting average is good enough that you are willing to step up to the plate now and then and swing at some questionable pitches. I know the baseball analogy is questionable, but it is summer and I thought twice about it and took a chance. Not sure why I veered off to the baseball analogy, but it is summer and only slightly questionable. I don't think it was too much. But we each get to make that determination.

#Questionable #PortaPotty #toomuch #Baseball

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