Last week, I found myself flipping through TV channels and stumbled across Kevin Costner’s classic baseball hit “Bull Durham.” In the film, Costner’s character is most remembered for his soliloquy on his life’s “credo” or core belief. While listening to Crash Davis (the main character) utter his credo filled with statements such as, “I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone” and “there ought to be a constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf,” I began to think of my own credo in life.
As college students, I suppose we believe in solo cups, going to office hours, tweeting about our nights’ adventures and taking classes based on what Rate My Professor says. Or we embody the stereotypical flakes from the song “Some Nights” by Fun who have no idea what they stand for. But, in reality, these stereotypical images don’t even begin to touch my fundamental beliefs.
So now, in hopes of inspiring each of you half-awake people to come up with your own, I have decided to create my own credo. This is the credo of Gabrielle Shayeb:
I believe in good people. I believe in the truth, even when it hurts. I believe in holding doors open for people. I believe in big dinners that last for hours. I believe in refilling your glass of wine (sometimes more than once). I believe in politics (not so much politicians”¦). I believe in freedom of speech and press.
I believe in autumn evenings spent with pumpkin spice lattes. I believe in second chances (sometimes even third and fourth ones too). I believe that children are far more intelligent than adults. I believe in hardback books (remember how Harry Potter smelled?). I believe in cursing like a sailor in times of great duress.
I believe in God. I believe in good steaks grilled to perfection. I believe in fresh flowers, especially daisies. I believe that you can tell a lot about a man by the way he treats his mother. I believe in working hard (thanks, Mom and Dad). I believe that history repeats itself (history major”¦).
I believe in kindness. I believe in being loud in club lib. I believe in cynicism. I believe in West Texas sunsets. I believe in believing what you want to believe.
That being said, I now want to ask you, discerning reader, what fundamental concepts lay at the core of your credo?
Do you believe in procrastinating until the last minute to study for the test (that’d be me)? Do you believe in talking “smack” before you have the facts? Do you believe in ketchup or mustard (both)? As I asked these questions of myself, I began to realize that credos are relative and never stagnant. I used to believe in the idle threats that Santa would bring me coal. I used to believe that bad things only happened to bad people. I used to believe in life’s concrete order.
But life, just like a credo, evolves. I wonder what 40-year old Gabby’s credo will be. Will I have the same credo as I do today or will I believe in going to bed before 11:30 and chastising people when they talk too loudly? I couldn’t abide by this currently, and yet, I fear that one day this is what will lie at the heart of my grown-up credo.
Future fears aside, I have two humble requests of you when it comes to making your own credo. 1) Understand that there will always be a person who has a different credo than you. Know that there will be people who abhor “The Hangover” (especially if they’re over 35) or who love “Twilight.”
Remember that there will be people don’t believe in holding doors open or who’ve never tried a honey-butter chicken biscuit. Ignore this and make your credo anyway. 2) Stand for something. It can be as simple as “I believe in driving with my windows down” or “I believe in the power of a Lil’ Wayne song.”
Know what you stand for today, so that when someone asks you what you about your credo, you won’t be forced to reply “What do I stand for? Most nights, I don’t know”¦.”
Gabrielle Shayeb is a senior majoring in history.