Smiling Faces Sometimes

I did loss prevention for a luxury retail store in Century City, California in 2007. I was employed by a security company. My scheduler advised me not to converse with any of the customers or sales personnel. I planned on following his advice. I met another loss prevention associate, the store’s manager, and most of the sales people on my first day. Agnes, a member of the sales team, seemed to take a liking to me. She asked me all sorts of personal questions and even offered me food (which I didn’t take). This transpired when there were no customers in the store and we were just standing around. I did not want to hurt her feelings by telling her that we weren’t supposed to be socializing. Her friendliness was overwhelming. She continued to initiate conversations with me as the days went by. Agnes kept a smile on her face the entire time. I found out that she lived with her boyfriend across from a Metro Red Line stop. I relied on the Red Line to go to and from work. One day, a customer transaction prevented the store from closing at the usual time. I missed my bus as a result. I was going to have to spend the night at Union Station because there was no way for me to get home. The only way around this was to get a ride. I explained this to Agnes and asked for a ride to the Red Line stop near her apartment. I saw evil in her eyes. The smile was gone. Then it returned. She agreed to give me a ride. We had a nice conversation on our way to the Red Line stop. She dropped me off and I thanked her. When I came to work the next day, I was surprised to find out that Agnes and a female coworker had reported me to the store manager for always asking them for rides. I was fired by phone after that shift. Agnes’s friendliness had compensated for the fact that she could not stand me. She was scared to death of me from the moment we met. This ordeal was a learning experience. It taught me to reduce my socializing with coworkers to “hi” and “bye.” It taught me to say “hi” and “bye” to coworkers in the exact same stone-faced manner. It taught me that smiling faces sometimes tell superb lies. The Undisputed Truth’s Smiling Faces Sometimes (1971) is a song that you should take to heart. Friendliness must not be confused with friendship.

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Fight The Good Fight

It’s alright to be an adversary, just not an enemy.

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A World Without Racism

The spiritual world has no climates.

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Die Hard

Action film is like pop music. This film genre primarily offers works with very little substance. It sells fun to the consumer. This has proven to be quite profitable. I have seen many action films in my time. I like less than a handful. Die Hard (1988) is my favorite. It’s about facing death. It’s about fighting death. It’s about cheating death. It’s about life. There may come a time in life when you must risk flesh and bone in order to do what is right. Never put the flesh before the soul. Death is inevitable. Do not be afraid to die for the right reason. There is a lot more to this film than many people realize. It is a tribute to the warrior. Die Hard redeems an entire film genre.

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Different

All organisms strive to survive. Human beings are the most intelligent of them all. Familiarity is key to our survival. We often gravitate to people who are similar to ourselves. It is much easier to connect with others who have things in common with ourselves. These things often include physical attributes such as skin color. People who do not have much in common with ourselves are different. Different is unfamiliar. Different is a possible threat to our survival. I was a boy when Do The Right Thing (1989) was first released in theaters. I enjoyed it but not nearly as much as when I saw it in a film class in college. I have never seen anything else like it. This film provides you with a wonderful opportunity to reexamine yourself. You may not like what you find.

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Just Call My Name

If you are not going to be my friend or enemy, then you shouldn’t associate with me. I have had people swear that they would be there for me in times of despair. Only a few of them were there on the occasions when life chipped away at me. I have no room in my private life for mere companions. Just Call My Name (1989), by Alyson Williams, makes me think of the few people who have been there for me over the years. It also reminds me of all the people who turned out to be mere companions. Distance yourself from the people who are not there for you in your times of need. They do not deserve to be in your company. 

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Heed The Signs

You don’t need friends who act like enemies or enemies who act like friends.

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Chew On This

I highly recommend giving a Heart In Diamond to each one of your enemies. It may just bury the hatchet. Regardless, it tells them that your composition is indestructible.

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The Worstest

The worst enemies are the kind who love us.

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Vengeance Is Not Yours

What goes around comes around–without any help from you.

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