Website owner: James Miller
Care of personal possessions. One of my notable personality traits is the care that I take of personal possessions. It is a trait that goes back to childhood. I take especially good care of things. It is almost unheard of for me to break anything. And I very rarely lose anything. I still have many of my childhood possessions including a jackknife that I was given when I was seven and the 22 rifle and fishing rod and reel that I bought with the money I earned working for Father. I still wear the bathrobe that Mother and Father gave me when I was in high school. About the only childhood possessions that I don't still have are those that Mother and Father packed away somewhere or threw out. It is a strong trait of mine that I always treat everything with respect and care. And if it happens to be something that belongs to someone else I treat it with double care. Tidiness. I am tidy. Whether at home or at work everything has its place and all is tidy. It is an important, deep part of my personality. I am a person of order. I don't like disorder. It is just the way I am. I couldn't change if I wanted to. It is one of the fundamental building blocks of my personality. Where the trait comes from, or why I am this way, I don't know. Indifference to fad and fashion. I am totally oblivious to all fad and fashion. Other people know what all the latest fads and fashions are in clothes, haircuts, jokes, ideas, etc. and follow them. I don't know what the fads and fashions are and couldn't care less. I am still wearing clothes that are twenty years old and I am sure they are way out of style. I guess I have a certain contempt for fad and fashion. Perhaps concern about fad and fashion comes from the desire to be accepted by the crowd (or fear of being rejected by the crowd). I give no thought to acceptance by the crowd so perhaps that is the reason for my lack of interest in fad and fashion. Efficiency mindedness. I am very efficiency minded. I just don't like waste --- waste of either money or energy. And this has a strong structuring effect on everything in my life. Almost all my daily routines and ways of doing things have been thought through at one time or another and designed and structured according to the dictates of efficiency. This trait combines with my Henry David Thoreau type philosophy (i.e. the best life is the simple life, keep your needs few, the best things in life are free) to order my entire lifestyle in all aspects. And part of it is simple frugality, too, I am sure. I do a cost/effectiveness study on everything I do. Frugality. I am frugal. Many people have more than one car. I have only one (12 years old). I will almost never make a special trip for anything because I figure the real cost of driving is 30 or 40 cents per mile. Instead I will try to pick the item up on the way home from work or wait until I have several things that I have to get before I make the trip. We take advantage of all of the supermarket half price sales and try to buy in quantity at half price those items that we use regularly. We buy only at stores with good prices such as K Mart and Evans. I wear my clothes until they are worn out and then I will consider patching them if I think it is worth it. We eat in a way that most people would consider very frugal. Our typical dinner is a small chicken thigh, some rice and a tossed salad. For variety we will substitute a white potato or sweet potato for the rice. We never have desert. But our eating not only has the advantage of being inexpensive, it is also much healthier than the way most Americans eat. On my last physical I came up looking so well on all the tests that the doctor told me he didn't know what I was doing, but whatever it was, keep doing it. There are very few luxuries in our life. We spend almost no money on entertainment. We never go out to restaurants. Sometimes we might stop in at a Mac Donald's and have a regular cheeseburger, french fries, and an ice cream sunday but that is about it. And it is not like I am really sacrificing anything. The things I really enjoy doing most are free --- reading, walking, reflecting, writing, listening to good TV documentaries, listening to classical music, etc.. June 1991 More from SolitaryRoad.com:
On Self-sufficient Country Living, Homesteading
Principles for Living Life
Topically Arranged Proverbs, Precepts, Quotations. Common Sayings. Poor Richard's Almanac.
America has lost her way
The really big sins
Theory on the Formation of Character
You are what you eat
People are like radio tuners --- they pick out and listen to one wavelength and ignore the rest
Cause of Character Traits --- According to Aristotle
These things go together
We are what we eat --- living under the discipline of a diet
Avoiding problems and trouble in life
Role of habit in formation of character
The True Christian
What is true Christianity?
Personal attributes of the true Christian
What determines a person's character?
Love of God and love of virtue are closely united
Walking a solitary road
Intellectual disparities among people and the power in good habits
Tools of Satan. Tactics and Tricks used by the Devil.
On responding to wrongs
Real Christian Faith
The Natural Way -- The Unnatural Way
Wisdom, Reason and Virtue are closely related
Knowledge is one thing, wisdom is another
My views on Christianity in America
The most important thing in life is understanding
Sizing up people
We are all examples --- for good or for bad
Television --- spiritual poison
The Prime Mover that decides "What We Are"
Where do our outlooks, attitudes and values come from?
Sin is serious business. The punishment for it is real. Hell is real.
Self-imposed discipline and regimentation
Achieving happiness in life --- a matter of the right strategies
Self-control, self-restraint, self-discipline basic to so much in life
We are our habits
What creates moral character?