DCPLive is a blog by library staff at the DeKalb County Public Library!
Aug 16 2010

I Beg to Differ With You

by Veronica W

“First me, then maybe you – but not for a long, long time!” When my friend said that, in the middle of  our heated discussion, I laughed so hard, all the fire of the moment vanished. Her tirade was winding down and as I opened my mouth for a cogent, lucid rebuttal, she held up her hand and autocratically uttered that ridiculous statement.  I don’t know whether it was original or not, but the sheer audacity of it struck me as very amusing. While her argument was weak, her bravery was admirable. What’s that  amusing threat about losing the hand you’re waving in my face? “Keep it up and you’ll draw back a nub!”

At some point, don’t we all feel there are some subjects for which it is worth going to the mat? Listen in on conversations during any pre-k or kindergarten recess (Do they still have those?).  Debating skills have not been honed yet, so many “discussions” are ended with a frustrated “Is not! Is too!” Sometimes this is punctuated with a stuck out tongue. The victor is the one who doesn’t cry or run to the teacher. Older children, all the way through high school, learn there is strength in numbers and develop their own cliques and  political parties, with  friends who think, act and dress like them. Backed by their cronies, they can take on all verbal opposition.

Adults are troubled, for the most part, about weightier matters. Beer, paper towel, garbage bag and soap powder commercials notwithstanding, grown -up concerns center around  world changing issues, such as politics, religion, social and environmental problems. To see just how many topics there are which are considered worthy of debate, you can go to the DCPL website, click on Reference Databases and then Student Resources. Under Opposing Viewpoints, there is a mind-boggling number of themes with two sides. If you are passionate about something and want to take on all comers at your next Tupperware or Superbowl party, but have no confidence in your persuasive rhetoric, there are also books that will help you.  How to Debate by Robert Danbar, Thank You for Arguing by Jay Heinrichs, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Persuasion by Steve Booth-Butterfield and Persuasive Speaking by Dixie Waldo will get you started. Also, just to get in the spirit of it, you can check out that wonderful movie, The Great Debaters, which was inspired by a true story and stars the remarkable Denzel Washington.

When we think about the ill will  sometimes generated by the passionate discussion of our personal bugaboos, we may realize some things in life are not worth any discussion at all, and certainly not worth our strident zeal. There are a few really important issues we may want to address but the merits of, say, Krispy Kremes vs. Dunkin’ Donuts is certainly not one of them.  “Is too?”  “Is not!!”                                           

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Jimmy L August 16, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Krispy Kreme, no contest!

Alison W August 17, 2010 at 11:14 AM

No way Jimmy, DD all the way!

Kay August 17, 2010 at 1:25 PM

Krispy Kreme doughnuts, Fresh Air pork barbecue, and Varsity cheese dogs are without peer.

Amanda L August 17, 2010 at 1:53 PM

I agree with Jimmy, Krispy Kreme. I have friends that will drive over 40 miles for those hot doughnuts!

Claire Drake August 17, 2010 at 7:40 PM

I have to say that “First me, then maybe you – but not for a long, long time” is a wonderful line. It’s one I hope to remember when I’m in a heated discussion with someone that won’t listen to my point of view. One of my favorite relationships is with my older daughter. She is a very intelligent opinionated person that backs up her side of a discussion really well. Over the years, we have had many interesting “disagreements” about various subjects and, after much debate, have ended with “Let’s agree to disagree on this matter”.
I agree that some subjects are worth debating one’s point of view, but it’s important to remember that everyone is allowed to have their opinions whether we agree or disagree with them.

Veronica W August 18, 2010 at 9:20 AM

I guess I must cast my vote on this weighty matter of donuts. (LOL) Alison, I’m with you. I really like Dunkin Donuts…although I have never had a hot Krispy Kreme.

David August 19, 2010 at 10:34 AM

There’s now a mystery series set in a doughnut shop. The first 2 entries are called GLAZED MURDER and FATALLY FROSTED.

P.S. When’s lunch?

Lynne August 19, 2010 at 3:50 PM

Definitely Krispy Kreme.

Ken August 20, 2010 at 1:00 PM

KK or DD? Just give me an endless supply of boxes of each while I decide. I hope I never make up my mind. Make sure there are lots of the DD Chocolate Creme filled ones since I really like those!

C.Dodd August 25, 2010 at 9:59 AM

Veronica, you haven’t lived until you have had a warm Krispy Kreme doughnut. But you have to go when the hot sign is on:)

Nolan R September 15, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Kay, I can only agree with part of that–it’s Krispy Kreme, Fincher’s Barbecue, and Nu-Way chili dogs! (Can you tell I’m from Macon?)

And Veronica, get yourself to Krispy Kreme and get a hot doughnut, now! (…or chocolate glazed…or…)

Veronica W September 16, 2010 at 3:10 PM

I’m going to tell you KK AND DD fans a secret. If you nuke any donut (or pound cake or pastry) for a few seconds,it will taste like it just came out of the oven. However it must be eaten right away or it will get hard and gummy.(You can thank me later.) 🙂

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