Intercontextual Badasses

One of the treasures of learning about other cultures is all the badasses you get to learn about. No matter what context, there's always a subjective evil that needs to be fought. And when there's evil that needs fighting you get badasses. 

Growing up in the states I wanted to fit in as much as I could because I looked so different. Because of this I eschewed any Asian badasses. I made an exception for 
Jackie Chan
just because of how entertaining his movies were, but beyond that all my heroes had to be American. 

Interestingly none of my heroes ended up being the All American type. I seemed to gravitate towards 
gangster rappers
and an Austrian immigrant 
bodybuilder
who became an actor and then became the governor of 
California


Now here's a little bit of a funny thing. In middle school I remember going "hey wait Arnold isn't American?" and my friend made a disbelieving face, "where do you think his accent came from?"

I didn't have an answer for him. Honestly I thought that his accent was just him. That's how naive I was! But later on when I was in German 101 I saw a picture of Arnold as examples of famous German speakers and I remembered that time when I had thought he was American.

Anyways, if you learn about other cultures you inevitably run into the badasses. Because they are the nodes that we connect history through. But if you only learn about the badasses of one culture then you're limited because based on the culture, there are different reasons for badassery. One example of a badass I learned about because I took German in college was 
Goethe
. Everybody in Europe knows about him, and everybody in Germany worships the guy, but I was left wondering, why the hell does everybody worship him? 

Nowadays it's obvious why he's a badass. Well to me at least. If you don't know about him or don't understand why he's a badass then next time I recommend looking into Germanic culture.

As a young man Goethe could write all day long, but as he grew older he found that he could muster the necessary creative energy only in the mornings. “At one time in my life I could make myself write a printed sheet every day, and I found this quite easy,” he said in 1828. “[N]ow I can only work at the second part of my Faust in the early hours of the day, when I am feeling revived and strengthened by sleep and not yet harassed by the absurd trivialities of everyday life. And even so, what does this work amount to? If I am very lucky indeed I can manage one page, but as a rule only a hand’s-breadth of writing, and often even less if I am in an unproductive mood."
My big takeaway was the phrase "absurd trivialities of everyday life." What a great way to put it. I guess for me it was Van Damme or Steven Seagal before he went crazy/got fat. Nowadays we can add Ahsam to the mix.
2021-05-16 19:10:22
For me it was Bruce Lee. Still in awe of the man. And why I love Warriors and martial arts in general. 

Nice write up Sir Abe. I like these types of posts. 
2021-05-17 03:21:09

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