What Are Your Adjectives?

Michael Attias Sep 15, 2021
Michael Attias

According to Wikipedia, "The Times They Are a-Changin'" is a song written by Bob Dylan and released as the title track of his 1964 album of the same name. Dylan wrote the song as a deliberate attempt to create an anthem of change for the time. 

Since I was born in 1965, I have seen and experienced more change in our country, culture and planet; probably exponentially more than in any other 56-year time span in the history of the world.

I may not have always felt comfortable with change, but I feel I have had an open mind and heart.

My first introduction to the use of pronouns was on the Showtime series Billions by one of the main characters, Taylor.

I have always respected every person’s right to believe, worship, live, love and identify as they wish, as long as they do not disrespect the way I do or force their dogma down my throat.

And as important as pronouns are to some people, I have a question…

“What are your adjectives?”

My question is not meant to disrespect those who find the use of pronouns important, but rather to cut through the clutter in the press and social media.

We can all agree, we are living in a country divided, but I believe the pendulum will swing to a time and place where we will come closer together.

The idea of “adjectives” was not invented by me, but I will take credit for casting them in a light via a relevant term. 

In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

As powerful as his quote was for the Civil Rights movement, I find it universal.

Shouldn’t we all be judged by our character; or as I am saying our “adjectives”?

Regardless of your political/social/religious/gender/sexual/fill-in-the-blanks beliefs and leanings, I am a big believer that your adjectives are far more important.

Imagine we all had to walk around with name tags consisting of the top five adjectives used to describe us by...our friends, family, co-workers, bosses, people we do business with, servers, retail clerks, service workers, etc.

Be honest with yourself. Like really honest.

Would you be proud to wear your name tag, or would you cover it up with a scarf or your long hair?

Character is who you are when no one is watching. We can all fake it when others are watching.

How do you treat the homeless person asking for help? Do you treat servers like valued dining guides or lesser-value humans there to serve you?

We probably invest more time protecting our 4.9 star Uber rating, than making sure we are proud of our adjectives.

There are plenty of people I philosophically see eye-to-eye on, who I think are total assholes, scumbags. And I know plenty of people I am a hundred and eighty degrees opposite of whom I respect as good people. People I would hang out with, do business with and refer to my friends and family.

Though I have chosen to pull my name out of the “Benevolent Dictator” race in 2024, I invite you to change the dialogue in your own circles. 

Share this article and challenge everyone you know to focus on their adjectives and those who they may not see eye-to-eye with.

I promise looking at life through the lens of adjectives will quiet the drum of social media and mass media shit stirrers.

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