Simi Valley Sophist

The Simi Valley Sophist ruminates on all manner of topics from the micro to the macro. SVS travels whatever path strikes his fancy. Encyclopedia Britannica: Sophist "Any of certain Greek lecturers, writers, and teachers in the 5th and 4th centuries BC, most of whom travelled about the Greek-speaking world giving instruction in a wide range of subjects in return ..."

Location: California, United States

Retired: 30years law enforcement-last 20 years Criminal Intelligence Detective.

Monday, October 09, 2006

"Who Needs to Be The Fairest Of Them All?"

“This face is all I have, born and lived in” are the opening lyrics of “This Face” by Rod Marshall in his CD “Nearly Willie.”

There is a photo of me as a young copper in 1972 hung on the entry way of my home. The photo is bracketed by photos of my two beautiful daughters. I’m pretty handsome, if I say so myself. Of course, I didn’t think so at the time. But, time has a way of putting a different perspective on things, don’t you think? Later photos document an aging face that is changing with time: lines around the eyes; skin leathery from the sun; receding hair; and the disfigurement and asymmetry of a surgeon’s knife. In fact, a family friend from the last half-dozen years or so did not recognize the early photo as a photo of me.

“You can’t buy a sympathetic mirror…”

Rod Marshall has such a face, and I suspect the song is strongly autobiographical. Peruse the lyrics here.

From the movie Unfinished Life, Einar Gilkyson also has such a face. He is a crusty, bitter Wyoming rancher living on a spread devoid of cattle and happiness. Both Einar and his beat-up pickup truck are old and marking time. Estranged from his daughter-in-law, Einer blames her for the death of his son. Neither Einar nor his 11 year old grand-daughter knows that the other exists.

“This old heart’s been beat-up…”

Einar is lucky. Through the efforts of his grand-daughter worming her way into his heart and the gentle prodding of his old cowboy friend, Einar is rescued from his self-destruction.

There is something magical about the way a child, at this time of my life grandchildren, can get inside your heart; A heart that might be shielded as a result of experiencing too many insults over the years. There is a look of pure joy in the face as the little one runs to you with open arms; A young child that does not recognize nor recoil from the roadmap of trauma and wear on the face of the grandparent.

There is something to learn from a child.

“Who needs to be the fairest of them all?”