Paul Anka Says It So Well


We are social beings. We like to be among and with and around, others. In all of that we prefer to please others so they will like us. Mostly. There are times, too, when we really want to especially please someone or at least get them to notice us. We can go to lengths to please and impress. This can be OK or even good, or sometimes not so good at all.

me in front of our hall mirror

 Who we are trying to impress can be decided by their station in life, or even more by what they might give us if we can get them to notice us and feel positive about us.


 Some will say it is to cover our inadequacies, mostly made up in our own minds. Sheesh sounds like I need therapy. Well maybe. Or is this just being human? The scene rests on the gravity, in our mind, of the effect not impressing someone is predicted to have. During WWII in the concentration camps there would be an occasional inspection of the prisoners by having them run with clothes off around a big field. The prison staff would sit around the edge of the circle and assess who was healthy and who was not. The idea was that if someone was deemed to be less healthy, they were shot. No point continuing to feed and house someone who was soon to die anyway. The effect was life or death.

 They say that many girls airbrush their pictures before posting on facebook, so they can supposedly get lots of ‘likes’. The effect can be life or death, figuratively speaking. Actors have the ability to ‘be’ someone they are not and, like the chameleon, become what they believe the casting Director is looking for at an audition. Still, a fabulous actor may not be chosen because they are, for instance, too tall (tough to hide that).

 Our lives are full of ‘auditions’ of sorts. Day by day we leave impressions with those around us. Some will talk about the impressions you or I leave. Comments about me when I am not in the room could be complimentary to downright nasty and hurtful. This is where my own opinion of myself can either save the day or bury me. How much gravity do I assign to the opinions I hear? There are many wise sayings, much sage advice for us to hear on this topic. One of my favourites comes from Paul Anka who sings

 You can have a talk with Jesus

A lover or a friend

But it’s the face in the mirror

That you live with

In the end

 Being your own biggest fan, especially in tough times, can be the breath of life. It takes honesty, humility and gentleness to be one’s own best friend. When I hear the temptation to get all serious and grouchy as I make up that someone is not much impressed with me, I also soon hear Paul singing for me, I smile.

 Joseph Seiler MCC