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 Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?

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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 05:59

@Priscilla wrote:
Temp, I too have been through that whirl of emotions as sports engulfed a few days of my interest but am now suffering badly from flag fatigue and discomfort that I can't quite identify.

Yes, coming down off that media driven high is discomforting, not unlike waking up sober the morning after a wild drunken party and remembering behaviour best left forgotten.

Caro, I'd go further and say almost every achiever owes family for their achievement. It is rare that anyone achieves success, in any field, without someone else (usually family) making the sacrifices to make it possible. There is, of course, the other end of the spectrum where an over achieving parent drives a child who lacks the ambition or talent to succeed, thus making the childs life a misery, but this is rare imo.

My husband has coached and trained a lot of children in football over the years, both in Aus and here, and the amount of children who have had the talent to play professional soccer but have lacked the ambition, disipline and family support to do the work necessary far exceeds those with the talent, ambition and support. It is a rare combination. His latest one is a 15yr boy who has so much promise that an Italtian agent (who works with two of the biggest Italian clubs) wanted to take him to Italy. His education, training etc would have been finished and paid for with quite a lucrative contract included. All the boy needed to do was improve in one area and a training programme was worked out for the months leading into the winter season and husband was willing to give up his own time, free of charge to work with him. After all that the child only bothered to turn up to one training session and was full of excuses for the ones missed, he is unappreciative, lazy and just not interested in doing the work. The parents aren't keen either and would rather he (a mediocre student at best) went to university instead and play football at a small local club. What do you do? Then there are those children who have all the will and ambition in the world and who lack the talent, those are the most difficult and saddest of all.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 11:14

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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 11:41

And what if he hadn’t encouraged her, coaxed her, pushed her… if she’d not achieved, he’d have been slated for not doing enough… as it is, she’s a medal winner and done well, so it’s now time to complain, in retrospect dads are in a no win position.

So what’s a female’s take on the mothers of these tiny tot pageant queens… encouraging the child to be so self obsessed… in interviews and programmes screened on the TV I’ve seen girls of 7-8-9 and 10 refusing to go out unless they have their make up on… and it’s not just a bit of lippy. Are the mothers role models for their daughters, or… a mother that hasn’t finished playing with dolly’s.

And what happens when and if it goes the other way and a parent is ether absent or never gives encouragement or shows any interest in a child’s development…
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 16:53

Since when are parents expected to be perfect anyway? They make mistakes and mostly do the best they can, just like everyone else.

But these days, not only are parents to blame if a child doesn't succeed but they are now also to blame if a child does succeed? No amount of pushing by a parent in the world can get a child anywhere unless that child wants it too, for whatever reason. These whingers need to grow up and begin accepting responsibility for their own actions, rather than blaming mummy and daddy for everything.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 17:25

Well, I suppose all the whingers out there can be glad Joan Crawford wasn't their mummy. Faye Dunaway's bad enough - the real Crawford would have been extremely scary.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUkE9qaVgmo

I'll never complain about the sensible re-use of Morrisons Dry Cleaners black plastic hangers ever again.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 18:07

I was speaking about the majority Temp, the Crawford ilk are the minority. Suddenly all parents are horrible because ungrateful Pendelton complains about her father, who sacrificed hours of his spare time to help her achieve a goal? Oi oi oi

During all my school years my father never came to one sport day or school event. It was no big deal, most fathers were working and didn't back then and no-one thought anything of it, including me. If it happened today I'd be considered a neglected child, which I most certainly wasn't.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 18:17

God it galls me to do it but I wholeheartedly agree with you ID…
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 18:29

It galls me that you need to say it galls you, just a simple agreement would have been sufficient and accepted in the manner intended Norman. And you accused me of taking things too far........
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 18:32

Mmmmm, I worry about the motivation of these parents who drive their kids so hard and, as it appears to be the case with Pendleton, seem unaware of the effect it is having emotionally on the kid. Living vicariously through your child's achievements, be it in sporting events, academia or beauty pageants, isn't healthy or commendable. Of course youngsters with a talent need encouragement and sometimes a bit of prodding but doing something so that mummy or daddy will love you, or love you more, is just not right.

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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 19:11

There have always been some over achieving parents, and probably always will be. And yes it is wrong, especially if it isn't what the child wants.

But this business with Pendleton has gone a bit overboard, imo, and it seems like poor Mr Pendleton is being hung out to dry all on the say so of one person, and without the opportunity of self defense. What has he had to say about it?

No-one really knows what happened, or what the situation was/is within the family, possibly the problem is with Victoria herself? Who really knows? Except the Pendletons.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 19:27

Who the f**k is Victoria Pendleton? Really, her importance as anything (even an esotypical role modelled person) hasn't made it to Norway. Is she a famous person we should be aware of in two weeks?
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 19:31

And why?
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 19:31

What has she done????
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 19:39

Lol, she is Britain's current darling, a gold medal cyclist who is whinging in the press about her years of hard work and she doesn't seem to like the fact that her father helped and pushed her. Silly really, every successful (and unsuccessful) athlete in the world has a similar story to tell.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 20:09

Oh for heaven’s sake ID… I was agreeing with you… cant you take it… I’m done.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 20:38

Of course Norman, butter wouldn't melt in your mouth and it is all is my fault. Whatever you reckon.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Tue 04 Sep 2012, 21:31

I think things have moved on slightly… Britain’s current darling would appear to be Eleanor ‘Ellie’ Simmonds MBE (born 11 November 1994 in Walsall, West Midlands) and is a British Paralympian swimmer who has achondroplasia.


Victoria Pendleton http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victoria_Pendleton it seems has been ‘outed’ as an ungrateful precocious little brat… and its reported fallen foul of her team mates over her love life…, life can be such a bitch.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2192997/Victoria-Pendleton-complains-teammates-Laura-Trott-Jason-Kenny-away-having-relationship.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19169678

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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Wed 05 Sep 2012, 07:57

I'm beginning to think all sport should be banned - it seems to drive people crazy (not just VP).
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/olympics/9517671/London-2012-It-can-be-dark-and-lonely-at-the-top-says-Victoria-Pendleton.html

ID, with respect, I think you are too harsh and dismissive of people's problems and difficulties, especially those which start in childhood.

I quite agree that we are all accountable for our own lives and feelings, and I certainly do not believe in creating and encouraging "victims". But sometimes children - and those the counsellors call "adult children" (not a term of contempt - people simply get "stuck" sometimes) - are miserable or "lazy" or aggressive or otherwise thoroughly objectionable for very good reasons, often reasons they simply do not understand. Not a matter of *blaming* our parents either - counselling should *not* be a journey of projected anger, resentment, hatred, bitterness and rage - but one of understanding and forgiveness - of our parents and (crucially) of ourselves.

Some people never have to undertake this painful but necessary journey - they are indeed the lucky ones. But others do.

Yes, Victoria Pendleton is having a good whine and whinge in public - she'll probably regret that in years to come, but at least she is acknowledging that there was/is something that needs sorting out.

Sylvia Plath - not one of your heroines, I think , ID - wrote a brilliant, utterly crazed and crazy poem about her father. It was called simply "Daddy". I'll find a link in a minute - just what we all need at 7.53am on a beautiful, sunny autumn day. Poor Sylvia and poor Otto (dad) and poor Ted (husband).


Last edited by Temperance on Wed 05 Sep 2012, 16:22; edited 2 times in total
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Wed 05 Sep 2012, 08:02

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Gran
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Wed 05 Sep 2012, 08:10

For my Hero I am going way way back, to the medieval time and I select William Marshal first Earl of Pembroke, a Knight and a gentleman.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Thu 06 Sep 2012, 02:30

Oh dear Temps... i must be missing the point with the poetry... what makes it so brilliant?
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Thu 06 Sep 2012, 06:30

I don't know if there is something in the makeup of sportspeople or high achievers in any field that makes them prone to depression and suicide or even if the statistics show this, but you do seem to hear about them quite a lot.

I am reading a book on cricket suicides by David Frith and I am beginning to wonder how there is anyone still alive in Britain. I'm not sure I am going to manage 250 pages with about 6 suicides per page. He has one sentence (under a chapter heading Eminent Victorians) which says, "In an uncanny juxtaposition of people and events, Drewy Stoddart and Arthur Shrewsbury, both subsequent suicides, walked out to open the batting for England on 17 July 1893 - passing another suicide-to-be in Australia's Billy Bruce. The funeral of former England batsman William Scotton, who killed himself at his lodgings near Lord's, had taken place a few days previously." !!

I think his thesis is that cricketers, higher than other sports in suicide figures, are less able to cope with the time when the adulation stops and the ordinary concerns of life - financial worries, marital breakups, death of parents/partners/children - become more prominent. I don't know why it should be worse for cricketers though. (Cricketers are brighter than football players? more sensitive? less well cared for by clubs? have to cope with cruel witticisms of team-mates?)

And re Paralympics, our media is being taken to task here for not showing much of them - an hour of highlights on SKY Sports twice a day is all we get. And we aren't sure in our household just what goal ball is - I thought it looked our children's game called "Hitting below the knees" which involved a child at each end throwning a rubber ball through the legs of the other kids, anyone hit below the knees was out. But goal ball does seem to need to reach some sort of goal. Seemed to be played by blind people.

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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Thu 06 Sep 2012, 07:47

I know nothing of cricket, so not qualified to pass a comment but it does seem your author David Frith may have a point about when the adulation stops and the ordinary concerns of life - financial worries, marital breakups etc become more prominent and not only to cricketers.

It seems the higher one climbs, the further it is when the fall comes, whether it be a sports star or a pop star… gosh now you mention it… there’s plenty of examples.

I hadn’t planned to watch any of the Paralympics but my word, they are certainly more entertaining than the other… I can imagine a few young disabled potential sportsmen and women will be inspired by the tremendous efforts I’ve seen… maybe a few will become ‘role models’ or even a hero or two… how for example can a swimmer with only one arm do so well against others with two… the American archer, no arms or legs, but still performing better than most able bodied archers… I had no idea the Paralympics were started here for the returning war injured… where the emphasis is not on what we can’t do but what we can do… good luck to them. I’m recently registered disabled, and am finding it hard to come to terms with, the lack of mobility after a very active life… they are certainly inspiring me… but I think I’ll pass on that crazy wheelchair rugby or basket ball…
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Thu 06 Sep 2012, 08:49

@normanhurst wrote:
Oh dear Temps... i must be missing the point with the poetry... what makes it so brilliant?

I know; I know, Norman.

To be honest I wish I'd never posted the message above. I think it's time I learnt to keep my big mouth shut.

Sylvia Plath certainly isn't everyone's cup of tea - but I did put "crazy and crazed", didn't I? She's an acquired taste.

This is a nice poem though - it's about the birth of her son, Nicholas Hughes. Sadly, he, just like his mum, eventually committed suicide, even though he had apparently done well and become a respected scientist. He went to live in Alaska - not the cheeriest place on the planet I should think for someone with a depressive tendency.

And perhaps, after all the analysis and talk and psychobabble stuff, this *is* all about brain chemistry and a *genetic* predisposition to depression etc. - even with cricketers. Also sensitivity to adrenaline - adrenaline highs and lows are well researched, I think?

I think you'd be good at wheelchair rugby!

http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15293
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Thu 06 Sep 2012, 09:32

Oh dear Temps, I do despair… I’m afraid that does nothing for me either… when does poetry as penned by Tennyson, or Kipling fade into oblivion in favour of just a collection of words. There’s neither rhyme nor reason why one word follows another… I mean it’s not like ‘The charge of the light brigade’ or ‘Hiawatha’ is it.

You got me worried now… why do I not appreciate that kind of writing…
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 00:35

Although I am not comfortable about the competition I can appreciate that it and sport must be an outlet for all the anger and frustration that any disability must engender in the young. Trauma following serious accident is, according to a good friend, is both agony for both patient and parent. She found the bitterness hard to counter and then the gradual growth of 'us and them' thoughts that came from her son's friendship with others like himself. But listening to such people on Radio 4, it was clear we cannot generalise because like everyone else each has individual attitudes. Sussing out what they are is hard. What might seem patronising empathy to one is what another seeks. Society is condemned for its attitude - the problem is as I see it is that we duck out because we can't hack handling it for fear of causing hurt.

As a child, I recall a bright boy with severe cerebal palsy being outrageously teased by the children in his family - until I learned that he enjoyed it. But I backed off. I could not engage in that kind of familiarity. On the other hand I do not shy away from people with mental/emotional problems and can relate far easier. It's a complex business, this living a life stuff.
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 01:01

Yes, I think assuming something is patronising is a bit dangerous. The (sports) reporter on the radio a few minutes ago was very impressed with the athletes and the paralympics, especially with the skills shown and the sheer enjoyment of watching the different games. He had specially liked the wheelchair basketball.

I assume people do not take part in these games if they do not value them and the competition. And the simple exercise involved must be useful from a health point of view. (Though I was reading of one of our softball players, in the ordinary Olympics, who has retired aged 27, saying her body is shot. I think you can have an excess of exercise, though no one ever says that.)

One day I will tell you about my Christmas trip where we stayed with a relative who took patronising to new levels.
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 05:26

@normanhurst wrote:
Oh dear Temps, I do despair… I’m afraid that does nothing for me either… when does poetry as penned by Tennyson, or Kipling fade into oblivion in favour of just a collection of words. There’s neither rhyme nor reason why one word follows another… I mean it’s not like ‘The charge of the light brigade’ or ‘Hiawatha’ is it.

You got me worried now… why do I not appreciate that kind of writing…

Fear naught Norman,

You're far from being the only one here who don't really appreciate the finer points in poetry, alas, my taste seems mostly to run along the lines of,

'twas Christmus nite in t'workhuss,
tha' nite of all the year, when t'inmates 'earts is full o' gladness,
and their bellies full o' beer.
Up spake t'workhuss master, sayin'
'to all wiwin' these walls,
I wish a merry Christmus'
And t'paupers answered,
'B*lls'

Or the cavalry one, now almost obsolete,

'Shit to the right o' them,
shit to the left of them,
shit to the front of them,
some bastard had blundered ...'

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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 05:53

Thanks mate... thank god i'm not the only one.

along the lines of... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8Yf5B6GbYk
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Gran
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 07:57

If its poets we are going for I nominate Rudyard Kipling, he has some beautiful ones

When yere lying wounded on Afghanistans plains

And the wimin come out to pick up what remains

Jest reach fer yere rifle and blow out yere brains

And go to yere gawd like a soldier.

Love it!!
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 08:22

Norman, as you are a fan of Lord Tennyson, you may like these lines, penned to commemorate the great man's death (and burial):

http://www.mcgonagall-online.org.uk/gems/death-and-burial-of-lord-tennyson



Personal favourite of mine (McGonagall, not ALT), and I must admit that these days I enjoy him more than poor old Syvie's anguished outpourings. She was a genius though...
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 08:42

I always thought Tennyson was too inconcise to rate as good poetry and too much a slave to rhyme to tell a convincing story. McGonagall however made a virtue of both these failings, bless him.


It's a pity we use the word "poetry" to describe everything we tend to then lump into that category. The original Greek "poeion" from which the term came down to us meant only "compose", and "poetry" therefore meant simply "that which has been composed". Nothing about rhyming or blank verse or anything like that - simply that someone consciously arranged the words to impart a meaning. A prose passage or song would have fitted the bill just as well. By eliminating some of these forms but retaining others which are not really alike at all we have compromised the definition and created a false comparison within what's left of it.

I have a huge admiration for poets who pay attention to metre and rhyme while still composing striking examples of succinct and translatable thought. But I also have an admiration for those who choose to depart from such strictures and structures in order to convey something which does not lend itself to that treatment. I see neither as "better" nor "worse" than the other, simply different styles of literary composition - just as I have favourite prose passages, books etc too.

Kipling was and is a fantastic spokesman for his nation, his time and the prevalent mores of both, and the craft he employed in arranging his poems is sometimes breathtakingly clever. I could read him for hours. But that doesn't mean I won't take a break and nip out for my frequent fix of Dickinson too (I could have substituted a myriad names in both instances there).

One of Emily's which I cite purely because I came across it again recently. I dare any woman who has hitched up with a man to say she doesn't know what Emily's talking about here (the last two lines are so sinister, aren't they?):

She rose to his requirement, dropped
The playthings of her life
To take the honorable work
Of woman and of wife.

If aught she missed in her new day
Of amplitude, or awe,
Or first prospective, or the gold
In using wore away,

It lay unmentioned, as the sea
Develops pearl and weed,
But only to himself is known
The fathoms they abide.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 12:28

Poetry, like art, becomes almost impossible to define when you attempt to but as a start I rather like Grayson Perry's, which I feel applies to both, "Craft + imagination". I'd add "with insight".
There's a real parallel between the two in their various forms: some grab you with their narrative power, some elicit an immediate emotional response, some deliver a 'click' of recognition and some require some serious work to penetrate. To me both, at their best, present a distillation of some aspect human experience and hold it up to view, to mix metaphors horribly, like a rough diamond reduced and faceted to reflect the light. Plath and Dickinson (Emily not David), do this sublimely.
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 14:09

I tend to agree with you ferval… you either like it, or you don’t… and I think my views on art are well enough known from another thread… but we’ve drifted a long way from heroes and role models…

I don’t think anyone has defined what a hero is, or a role model… the two being very different.

Obviously over the years the meaning of words has changed, but I think heroes are still those that have put their own safety or life on the line for the benefit of others and shown tremendous courage… no matter what side of a conflict they may be on…

The term role model generally means any "person who serves as an example, whose behavior is emulated by others".

I’m very interested why Gran selected for her hero William Marshal first Earl of Pembroke. Is there a family connection I wonder?
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 14:32

"Hero" has become hackneyed and vague a term of late, especially when we talk of our "personal heroes".

However "heroic" has more or less retained its more noble and concise meaning, even in this day and age of "stars" and "celebrities" to be found at every street corner and all posing as "personal heroes" to someone or other. I tend to agree with you - before I call someone a hero I do tend to ask myself if I truly think their actions or behaviour heroic. It's amazing the number of times one has to rapidly demote a hero on that basis!
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 16:00

And it is surely a sign of the times when you ask someone if they have a favourite hero and they say, "Yes, the Milk Chocolate Caramel one."

Not trying to drag the conversation back to poetry (well, I am, but only for a moment), but the books discussed here, "Poets on Prozac" and "Madness: a Bipolar Life" look interesting:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/29/health/29book.html

I wonder if Lord Byron was right when he said that poets are "all crazy"?

Little snippet from the divine Ms Dickinson:

"Much madness is divinest sense

To a discerning eye;

Much sense, the starkest madness."

Mind you, the rest of the poem is ambiguous (I think).

I do like that quote at the end of the New York Times review - the one from the Welsh poet, Gwyneth Lewis.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 16:25



For listeners in places like Bolivia who perhaps wouldn't understand the reference to Cadbury's chocolate.
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Nielsen
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Fri 07 Sep 2012, 16:50

Well, Temperance, neither do I understand possible references to that brand ...
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 00:10

This will not Bolivian guests, Temp. Half price Heroes now on sale in Tesco's - that might do it.

Heroes are like those particles in way out physics. They only exist if they are observed doing what they did.

Role models are constant in whatever is observed of them doing.... good or bad.

Yeah, I know, it's late. I'll go to my room before I am sent.
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Gran
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 00:42

Norman you are a laugh a minute, moi descended from William Marshal? no, my admiration is owed more to Elizabeth Chadwick. Actually if you can judge by what you see on the internet it seems that all his descendents went off to America.
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 01:00

Quote :
before I call someone a hero I do tend to ask myself if I truly think their actions or behaviour heroic.

But even if you decide an action is heroic, that doesn't mean the motives of the person are heroic, exactly, in the sense that they are a definite risk to do something the person considers dangerous, worrying and beyond their usual skills. Soldiers often do things I think are heroic, but sometimes their motives seem to be more of a deathwish, or just in keeping with the sort of idiotic things their personalities enjoy.

And people here are often awarded (justifiably) heroism awards for pulling people from burning cars, or similar. They are often say afterwards they were not being heroic, they just did it automatically without thinking of the consequences.

The most heroic thing I've ever done is quite prosaic, but it did involve me having to do something I would never normally do and being quite frightened doing it. My little son had got stuck on the roof following his brothers. No one else was around to help, so I had to go to the second top rung of the ladder and gather him up and bring him down. There was no one to hold and steady the ladder (why couldn't one of the older boys have come to do this, I wonder?) and I could see it very easily swaying when I lifted Louis onto it. It was pretty easy to imagine us all landing on the ground, the ladder with me and child under it. But then I didn't really have a choice, so in a way that's not heroic either.

I think confronting phobias comes close to heroic, even though most of might not think of allowing a spider to run along your hand as particularly brave and daring.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 01:40

Probably confronting a phobia shows personal courage and bravery, but I wouldn’t go as far as saying heroic…
I would say a child is being very brave if say after a fall and a badly grazed knee is dressed the child didn’t scream the place down.
Maybe someone shows great courage in rehabilitating her/himself through great pains after an operation or a car crash or similar… or facing an armed villain.
Are you suggesting then Caro that an act of heroism is pretty much an involuntary deed, to act without thinking of one’s own personal safety, which is my own take on it. However there’s plenty of people that have executed some pretty amazing rescues, well planned and with great risk assessment… they too are heroes don’t you agree.
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 04:19

No, I think lots of acts that are called heroic and that are heroic by most people's standards are not quite involuntary but automatic and that diminishes some of the heroism of the action. It's heroic if you are well aware that you are may be killing yourself in the process and do care about that or about pain. But you still do it anyway. The people who went underground to support people trapped in the Christchurch earthquake, even though there was quite a reasonable chance the whole building would collapse with them in it, for instance. (Of course, underground terrifies me, so anyone going deliberately underground seems heroic to me.)

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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 05:11

If you are talking about professional rescue teams and emergency services going underground Caro, then I wouldn't class them as heroic per se. This is their job, what they willingly chose, trained and are payed to do, and pulling people out of life threatening situations is not going above and beyond the call of their duty (as the Americans are so fond of saying).

On the other hand if it was an average man off the street, then yes. He/she would be heroic.
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 06:21

The one I was thinking about was just someone off the street. He stayed with a woman for several hours. But I think that was just one of quite a number of similar instances. But soldiers are paid for what they do too - I don't think doing your job stops some actions within it being heroic.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sat 08 Sep 2012, 10:55

You're all sooooo last century, today's 'hero' is just as likely to be a mascara or a moisturiser. http://beaut.ie/blog/2006/whats-your-hero-product/

'Hero' and 'heroic' have been banded about with gay abandon in reference to the Paralympics but, to my mind, not appropriately. Although these competitors have shown fortitude, dedication and courage in facing their difficulties, this doesn't have the element of acknowledged personal risk and the determination to go ahead and do the 'right thing' despite this that I feel heroism must include. That risk doesn't have to be physical either; discounting risk to ones reputation, intellectual credibility, liberty or even livelihood by continuing to propound a philosophy, theory or political opinion can also be heroic.

My hero's 'twirl'.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sun 09 Sep 2012, 05:37

I agree ferval. The age of over-statement, emphasis and exaggeration, it can't end soon enough.

The US has much to answer for.
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sun 09 Sep 2012, 15:43

I like ferv's definition of heroism, 'Doing the right thing despite great odds.'

Is that about right, ferv?

So is good role modelling the ability to discern qualities worthy enough to emulate?
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Nielsen
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sun 09 Sep 2012, 15:58

@Priscilla wrote:
I like ferv's definition of heroism, 'Doing the right thing despite great odds.'

Is that about right, ferv?

So is good role modelling the ability to discern qualities worthy enough to emulate?

This I seem to have heard formed into a kind of prayer - from Latin? - where a man asked the gods to give him three gifts, the will to change what must be changed, the patience to endure what can be no different, and the ability to know which (discern?) of the two was needed, when.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sun 09 Sep 2012, 17:21

Ah yes, the motto of AA.

"God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference."

A bit too wishy washy and defeatist for my taste; although realism is often sensible, it's no reason to never try. I prefer to rage, rage, when I can be bothered of course.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Hero or Role Model... what's the difference and who were yours?   Sun 09 Sep 2012, 17:26

The Automobile Association has always been a very philosophical outfit. Their current motto of "Get rescued from the roadside - from £30" has deep religious overtones too, I feel.
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