Reggie, May I?

(A note from the blog hostess:  today’s blog is a “guest post” by Reggie Black…who’s sorry now?)

It’s easier to beg forgiveness than to ask permission.

How did you hear that?  Some people hear things differently than others do.

Sailors have a saying about the Navy’s three major warfare specialties, aviation, surface warfare, and subsurface warfare.  Each one is a unique environment with its own unforgivable requirements.  The saying goes, For the submariner, unless it is expressly directed in the manuals, it is forbidden; for the ship driver, unless it is expressly forbidden in the manuals, it is allowed; for the aviator, it is easier to beg forgiveness than to ask permission.

I spent the majority of my Navy career in aviation, where my first boss was killed in a mid-air collision.  Less than two years ago, a dear friend from that first squadron died in another jet mishap.  Aviation is uniquely unforgiving of any mistake, and per another saying, everyone up there is trying to get you killed.  It’s all the pilot can do to keep himself alive and bring his aircraft back safely.  There are a lot of rules and procedures, but if needed to stay alive and bring the airplane back, they all go out the window.

I hear “It is easier to beg forgiveness than to ask permission” as a recognition that life requires breaking the rules to survive from time to time.

Our hostess hears it differently.  Say it to Julie, and she hears people doing whatever they want and expecting to get away with it by tossing off an apology or two.  That’s how she learned the phrase.

Oh, did I butt in?  Sorry.

Oh, did I scratch your car?  Sorry.

Oh, did I fart in a crowded elevator?  Sorry

Oh, did I steal tens of trillions of dollars from your and your children and your children’s children?  Sorry.

Well, the last one’s a bit of a stretch.  I haven’t heard a single bank, insurance company or other financial services corporation, never mind the Congress and the two Presidents who arranged to give them $85 billion a month plus a $700 billion down payment (with generous side payoffs) say they were sorry.

I thought it was love meant never having to say you were sorry?

At any rate, I understand how Julie hears the saying that way.  We live in a sociopathic society where people will do whatever they want, and then expect to get away with it by just saying sorry.  In other words, they know what was expected of them, but they sloughed it off anyway, and then expect you to let them off the hook with a few dropped words, a wave of the hand.  Never forget the key part–they knew what was the right thing to do, and didn’t do it, anyway.

You decide whether “Sorry” is appropriate.

I prefer the way I hear it, people acting when necessary for their good and the good of others without waiting on some arbitrary nabob’s permission to do it, whether town council, newspaper editor, colonel or President.  Just do it.  Get ‘er done.  Make it so.

And I’m not sorry.

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4 Responses to Reggie, May I?

  1. Slipper Sistah says:

    Where’s da Moose?

  2. Slipper Sistah says:

    It is a sure thing, we don’t even need to take bets on it that there are moose in and around your new dwelling place; have you seen any sign (real tracks) or droppings etc.? Don’t you go chasing any on those snowshoes Julie-Ann, big mistake, as you can see on that YouTube video–6543TE of the snowboarders out West somewhere happened upon a moose and were following it down a trail. One of the guys was hot on its trail. The other was screaming at the top of his lungs. If it had been a yearling, and its big mamma was still around, they’d a been pancake dough. It certainly looks like animal harrassement that is of course until the animal (must have said) “enough all ready, either pass me or get off the road” turned around face to the snowboarder shooting the video and that bleep-snowboarder decided it was in their best interest to abort their current travel plans and get off that trail.
    Moose don’t show up that well when they get out onto the road or highway especially at night but surprisingily even during the day they can blend into the dark background. They’re a dark object against a dark background and for some reason their coat doesn’t reflect the light, their shadow hardly shows either. All one sees, if they’re lucky enough to see anything in time with enough distance to avoid impact is what looks like four light brown post sticking up in the road.

  3. Slipper Sistah says:

    ps. So for those inexperienced drivers out there when you see what looks like four light brown post sticking up it the road ahead of you at night (THAT IS A REAL MOOSE SIGN) for STOP! or SLOW DOWN. Heed it and It may just save your life.

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