Elwood vs. Ebeneezer

Like many of us who research via various information banks (or libraries) sometimes an odd factoid (as in ‘not necessarily a fact per se) POPS and sends imaginations on a side path. That phenomenon is akin to walking a dog, who suddenly pulls hard on the leash as it encounters a squirrel. Lately, I’ve been thinking about what motivates human beings to pursue a life philosophy. You know, we all have a basic philosophy that influences our daily actions. Some notions serve us well. Often, we can observe, a mindset fails to aid us in becoming worthwhile people.

Well, this morning I was fooling around and looking up things on the internet. For fun, curiosity urged me to look up Harvey. As many of you who have followed me (or at least peeked at my blog) I am an AVID film and theater buff. The quote I wanted was found in the Wikipedia article on Harvey. It goes like this:

Years ago my mother used to say to me, She’d say, ‘In this world, Elwood, you must be – she always called me Elwood – ‘In this world, Elwood, you must be oh so smart or oh so pleasant.’ Well, for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant. You may quote me.”

  • James Steward as Elwood P. Dowd

Harvey (1950)

As I read the above quotation, its opposite fictional character came to mind. Ah, yes, Ebeneezer Scrooge. My ‘dog chased that squirrel’. How do these characters compare?? 

Elwood

  1. Background – an upper middle class gentleman who pursues his gifts of hospitality and compassion.
  2. Lives with sister and niece with whom, for his part, fondness and concern are the hallmarks of his behavior.
  3. Manages to overcome the misunderstandings that prompt his sister to have him committed to an institution.
  4. So, Mr. Dowd and his beloved pookah, Harvey, continue in their amicable relationship.

Ebeneezer

  1. Background – an upper merchant class Englishman whose father rejected him (due to the death of his mother, as he was born.)
  2. Lived reconciled with his father and sister, until he was apprenticed in an accounting firm.
  3. Mr. Scrooge only manages to find redemption due to the intervention of his deceased partner (Marley) and the famous three Spirits of Christmas.
  4. Awake to his failings to live with others with compassion and consideration, he ends his days with a new set of values that benefit everyone else in his life and community.

CONCLUSION:  I, too, recommend PLEASANT.

Thanks for stopping by, Susan

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