Saturday, July 3, 2010

Everybody's Doing It!: A Torch for Men

I guess I could get a whole lot of comments if I chose to stridently voice my opinions on UGA's athletic director. I have lots of opinions, too.

But I guess that's why I like having a Blog. I can challenge my own ideas and find new lines of thought, new avenues of expression.

I noticed with interest that Evans reportedly used a line with the arresting officer. In essence, he said, "But, everybody's doing it!"

Familiar retort. That was his defense and the response (or the associated, "But everyone's done it!") of many who argue that Evans should be kept in position.

The overused excuse didn't work with the police and it may not work with President Adams. If Evans is dismissed and he chooses to contest the decision, perhaps that will be the core element of his attorney's closing argument to the jury.

But here's my point-- we all know what Evans has done. It's on all the Blogs. Everyone who follows sports in the SEC is aware. His very unflattering picture has been on countless web sites. Even photo-shopped for comedic effect.

But how about us?

"Everybody's doing it" is often used as a defense. I think it's much more valuable as a torch of introspection.

How are we doing? Are there areas of compromise in our lives? Are we as husbands lying to our wives so we can sneak out and scurry through the shadows? Where were we this past Wednesday night? Where will we be tonight? Do we have habits that might lead to destructive results?

Are we doing it, whatever it is? If so, what are we doing about it? Are we doing all we can to do all we can? Do we have speed bumps on our private roads of passion? Keep Out signs on dangerous web sites, office doors, and night clubs?

As we shine the light on our own souls, we should also hold it up a bit so that we can see around us some. Do we have relationships with other men that hold us accountable? If we feel like stepping out on our spouses, who would we tell? Do we have friends who can handle that kind of cell phone call? Guys who know me best and still love me? Someone who will put an arm around me and tell I'm an idiot, while seriously warning me so that my picture doesn't end up in the AJC? If my will is strong, is there one buddy who will run to my side and sit with me until the anger at my spouse, or the feeling of disappointment, or the flames of desire die down?

I wonder if Damon Evans has friends that will validate him as a person, whether or not he keeps his job or his marriage? Someone who cares not one iota whether Evans is the athletic director of a major college or the janitor who cleans up the stadium?

To whom would you go after the news broke? When the tears of regret come, is there a shoulder to cry on? Not some woman, but a man who will clasp you in a bearhug and not let go? Hopefully, there is a face that just flashed in your mind, bringing a smile and a sense of thankfulness to your heart.

Everybody's doing it may signal hope. It's not a shield that keeps us living in separation and irresponsibility. I like to think of it as that torch of introspection, and when joined together with other men who carry the same flame, it becomes a bonfire. The knowledge of our mutual weaknesses should cause us to emerge out of the darkness.

This is dangerous living. The shadows seem so comforting. Not everyone can manage our stuff. But it is the shadows that are the real danger. The bonfire is the warmth, the protection, the opportunity for life that we all long for. It's the glint from that fire, I believe, that makes us men love sports.

We need to really talk, guys. Relate as men. Dare to be vulnerable. Let's be warned so that we don't lose what is truly valuable. And be warmed by a community of men that care for each other.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Man up Evans! Walk the walk. This is coming from someone that does!
-UGA Grad.