Just yesterday morning they let me know you were gone … um, wait, wrong brain thread.
[whir r r r]
Just yesterday morning I said this:
No one under the age of 70 needs self-esteem. It does teenagers no good — every high school is Lord of the Flies writ large and illegibly — and once they’ve achieved adulthood it’s more trouble to maintain than it’s worth.
The esteemed Tamara K. has been thinking along similar lines:
I am absolutely sick and tired of the very phrase “Self Esteem”; embodying as it does the concept that one should have warm fuzzy feelings about one’s self for no adequately explained reason whatsoever, as though by simply existing, one was doing something inherently good rather than merely converting oxygen into greenhouse gas. With “Self Esteem” came the notion that we were to go to any extent to avoid things that may damage it in our little tricycle motors, even if it meant dumbing down grades and no longer keeping score at kiddie sporting events. All this seems to ensure is that we’re producing whiners who will expect the real world to be as careful of their self esteem as the artificial environment of William Golding Memorial Elementary School was, and who will proceed to vote for anyone who promises to make it that way.
But she takes it a bit further than I did:
Whatever happened to self respect? The idea that one should have some sort of internal code and judge one’s self based on how well one lives up to it? Or would that reveal that so many people are worth very little esteem at all?
Incidentally, there exists in my hometown a firm called Esteem Cleaners, not far from the palatial Surlywood estate.