Of Appearance

For how many years have you been told the old adage, “The clothes make the man”? This week, appearances are the topic for our little dose of wisdom. Brought about by seeing several poignant examples over the course of the past week of truly small-minded people treating others cruelly for things inherently shallow.

Certainly, it would not be sensible of me to say that appearance plays no part in how most people interact with the world – it is no less than the nature of man that what we see does have input on how we react to a person. It affects it. Yet it should not dominate our reaction. What makes us human should be our ability to rise above first impressions, shallow inferences, to see what lies within before we make our judgments. After all, the clothes may change, but that doesn’t change the person.

To demonstrate this, our latest quote of the week comes from an old favorite of mine: Neil Gaiman. Many among you may be familiar with his “Sandman” series, among his many works, and if so, you’ll probably recognize this one:

“It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But the half-wit remains a half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor.” ~Neil Gaiman, “Sandman”

To demonstrate, I give you the many faces of Chris, that is to say, me…a lot of different mes there, in some strange, some normal forms…but do I really change? Outwardly, perhaps, but the silly little writer has always remained…