Sticks and stones

I make no apologies for today’s post being more emotional and sentimental.

The phrase ‘sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me‘ is well known throughout the English-speaking world and surprisingly goes back some way.  A quick web search found that in the The Christian Recorder of March 1862, there was this comment:

Remember the old adage, ‘Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me’. True courage consists in doing what is right, despite the jeers and sneers of our companions.

So if in 1862 the saying was referred to as an ‘old adage’ then it clearly pre-dated 1862 by some degree.

A few days ago, Dusty M., here in Payson, AZ, sent me a short YouTube video called The Power of Words.  I’m as vulnerable as the next guy to needing being reminded about what’s important in this funny old world.  Then I started mulling over the tendency for all of us to be sucked into a well of doom and gloom.  Take my posts on Learning from Dogs over the last couple of days, as an example.

There is no question that the world in which we all live is going through some extremely challenging times but anger and negativity is not going to be the answer.  As that old reference spelt out so clearly, “True courage consists in doing what is right, despite the jeers and sneers of our companions.

So first watch the video,

then let me close by reminding us all that courage is yet something else we can learn from dogs.

Togo the husky

In 1925, a ravaging case of diphtheria broke out in the isolated Alaskan village of Nome. No plane or ship could get the serum there, so the decision was made for multiple sled dog teams to relay the medicine across the treacherous frozen land. The dog that often gets credit for eventually saving the town is Balto, but he just happened to run the last, 55-mile leg in the race. The sled dog who did the lion’s share of the work was Togo. His journey, fraught with white-out storms, was the longest by 200 miles and included a traverse across perilous Norton Sound — where he saved his team and driver in a courageous swim through ice floes.

More about Togo another day.

10 thoughts on “Sticks and stones

  1. Nice. Indeed. But since some may wish this to be a CYNICAL site, let me put things back in the proper perspective.

    It’s a beautiful life, and we are all going to die. Ha ha ha?
    PA:

    Like

  2. That is a very moving story in the video. I did notice that the young lady did not put any money in the tin herself. Perhaps her contribution was priceless!

    Like

  3. Our sermon today was about sticks and stones which is perfect timing because my sixth graders are throwing words at each other and it is hurting. So I looked up the phrase and found you. We were shown the video in a faculty meeting and since you tie into dogs I was hoping to find “the answer.” When you look at the website you’ll see out community project where I have twenty schools training in three shelters. One would think that because these kids are so loving to the animals that they could pass that kindness to each other. Any words of wisdom? Also check this out,http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-df9J4DaweY. Thank you, Virginia

    Like

    1. Virginia, I took a break from the writing and saw your comment to this post and was blown away to use the vernacular! Thank you so much. Don’t know about me offering words of wisdom but I am going to publish a new post based entirely around your comment, and the question. Before the end of the week! Thank you so much for dropping by.

      Like

Leave a Reply to Paul Handover Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.