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This is my story as to why the Dare 2 B Different" is in my life
"Dare 2 B different"
First of all, I have to admit that I hate the words “fitting in.” When I was a teenager I had no problems about "Daring 2 B Different" – I’m afraid I was the rebellious one who must have been a nightmare for all those well-meaning souls - (I mean our dear parents and teachers, of course) - who seemed to be so insistent on wanting me to conform. It was the last thing I wanted to do – not that I felt I was being particularly awkward or unobliging. It was simply the case that I was different, and had a rather conceited and arrogant contempt for what seemed to be a deliberate attempt by society to make everyone the same. This attitude was quite normal then amongst the young who were aware of society – we had all read 1984, Big Brother is Watching You, and sang songs like “They all live in little boxes, and they all look just the same.”
We hated the theory that society was going to be brainwashed with television, drugged by it into sitting in chairs all the time instead of actually “living,” and trying to make sure that nobody thought for themselves or stepped out of line. Many of us are beginning to think that many of these predictions actually came true – and now it is far worse. Teenagers all want to wear the same clothes, eat the same food, go to the same places, and do the same things. Maybe I’m wrong, but that’s how it looks to us oldies – and it was also, in my not very humble opinion, a major reason where schools began to go wrong, everyone being urged to turn out the same, teachers having to teach the same, everything taught everywhere being the same, no matter what the individual talents of staff or pupils. Now kids are expected to learn foreign languages, forced to do PE (do they even call it PE now days or am I showing my age?), the tone-deaf forced to do music, and those who loathe reading supposed to write poetry! But if you were a girl who wanted to play football or a boy who wanted to do typing or needlework, they’d think you were a nuisance, and I say hell, go for it "Dare 2 B Different."
Now I’m a bit older, and have had over 50 yrs of being Different (ask anyone that knows me even for the shortest of time they will say I’m different). Ask my mother if from a child, I was different. "I’m the only HELL my mother ever raised." I suppose I am a bit more sympathetic towards others struggling to make sense of their own lives, trying to get through stressful and worrying days coping with their own exhaustion, bringing up teenagers who seem determined to wreck their lives through stupid mistakes. It is the hardest thing for an adult who loves people to watch others heading – as you think – straight for disaster, and not be able to do much about it except nag. The nagging, of course, is appreciated by those you care about just about as much as I appreciated all the nagging done to me. It’s quite odd to look at the old folks around you, and imagine that those respectable wrinkles once may have gone through even more nagging and earache than you!
So, "Dare 2 B Different" is not much problem for the natural-born rebel, as me, although it can be a big headache for the adults responsible for you until you set up on your own. And even then it doesn’t really stop.
The problems are:
For the shy who longs to be like everyone else in the group and feels left out, I say "Dare 2 B Different." For the individual who is being tempted into bad ways – getting drunk, smoking, sexual activity, etc., I Say "Dare 2 B Different." For the individual who is so committed to serving God that he/she is in danger of becoming a “pain in the neck” – an extremist - I say go ahead, "Dare 2 B Different." For the one who might want to ride a different motorcycle than what everyone else thinks you should ride, I say "Dare 2 B Different." Buy a different type car if you want, buy a different type home. "Dare 2 B Different." It's okay!!!
What to do?
First, who are your friends? I wisely advise people to choose their circle of friends carefully, and not take as your intimate friends those who will make fun of you or your faith. You may admire particular people, and long to be like them, but if they laugh at you and your religion, or make you feel threatened, or inferior, or small, or stupid – then they have a character problem. Something in there is not very nice. They enjoy bullying and making others feel small. They may be “with it,” or handsome, or beautiful, or dressed in all the latest, but so what? The friends around them will either be of similar type, or will probably be afraid to upset them. This applies not only in general terms, but even amongst others themselves – sometimes one type of person can be very hurtful about another type, and it is probably sensible not to get worried or upset about this but to seek and "Dare 2 B Different" and just move on with oneself.
This is what adults mean when they advise youngsters to form their relationships with those they really like, especially when considering life-partners. We all tend to fall for unsuitable people – but we really need to fall in love with someone we like. “Love” can be exceedingly stupid sometimes (trust me, I know, and I’ve done every stupid thing there is to do to be stupid in LOVE), often we are really only in love with the clothes they are wearing, or the way they dance, or whatever – and not the actual person. When they finally upset us over the limit, we suddenly wake up and realize how silly we were to be so fooled. It’s amazing how often young people can be so desperately in love one moment that they would literally give up anything or do anything for the adored one, but then they get “dumped” and perhaps by next week they’ve been forgotten and somebody else has come along. So choose your friends wisely. Even if you manage not to copy the bad behavior and habits of unwise friends, people tend to judge all those in the group the same and you might pick up a reputation for something you haven’t actually done. And remember, once a tomato starts going rotten, it tends to quickly affect all the others around it. It’s a process impossible to stop, so "Dare 2 B Different."
Secondly – what is it about being "yourself" that is causing you worry? Whatever it is, it may be that if it is upsetting to you or your friends, it is something or some aspect of "yourself" that you are getting wrong. "Dare 2 B Different," let go. Honesty, and courage, and generosity, and modesty, and being helpful, kind and unselfish are more important. If you tell lies, or steal, I suggest you "Dare 2 B Different." On the other hand, if you can manage to resist the temptations and build up a noble character for yourself – and often the more hardships and struggles we face, the firmer the character we become, so it’s ok to "Dare 2 B Different."
This is why I started "Dare 2 B Different."
One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.
He said, "My son, the battle is between two "" inside us all..
One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence,empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith."
The grand son thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: "Which wolf wins?"
The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."