Saturday, August 23, 2008

Modern Day Hubris

I've been thinking about this post. For days I have been writing it inside my head, but I kept thinking that I was using the word "Hubris" incorrectly as I didn't know to translate it into "modern times." Luckily Wikipedia was able to clear my confusion.

But I digress...

Part 1: A few months ago I brought myself a real pair of sunglasses, (no $10 special for this girl anymore), by Ralph Lauren. As I stood in the store trying them on, I asked myself was it too much, not just the price but was I flaunting, but in the end, I threw caution into the wind and brought them.

Part 2: My current position for a large retail company, requires that I travel through a large area that spans across half the state. While I have to use my own vehicle (an SUV), I am given a car allowance as well as mileage reimbursement. Once the price a gas went insane, I went out and leased a Mini Cooper S (Turbo) to increase my mileage and to save money. I showed off that car every place I went, I bragged on and on about it. Join a Mini Cooper forum and even gave him a name, "Super Coop" or just Coop for short.

Here's my avatar for the forum:

So where does this word Hubris enter the picture you ask? Well, during my Junior year in undergrad, I took an elective for my degree is English Literature. The elective was a course in Greek Literature that was taught by a Professor Allsup, (which is another story for later). As he spoke of the Ancient Greek tragedies he used the word Hubris so often that the word would flow into his next class (American Literature - oh yes, had the misfortune of taking two classes with Professor Allsup). I decided at the end of the semester, that he loved the word Hubris, because he loved to lecture about all the universities on his resume and his talent as an English Professor, (but yet, no tenure?). (Sorry let me put that baggage away.) So basically to have Hubris is defined as:
Hubris against the gods is often attributed as a character flaw of the heroes in Greek
tragedy
, and the cause of the "nemesis", or destruction, which befalls these characters. However, this represents only a small proportion of occurrences of hubris in Greek literature, and for the most part hubris refers to infractions by mortals against other mortals.
Okay, fast forward to this week:

I lost my sunglasses last Sunday at Home Depot. As we drove home it dawn on me that I didn't have them. My DH took pity upon me and went back to search the store and parking lot, but in the end it was a waste of time. Now all I have is a left is an empty Ralph Lauren Sunglasses case.
Monday night Tropical Store Fey blew onto Florida. I spent the first few hours of the storm listening to the drip drip drip of my roof leaking (just replaced 4 years ago). The reason, because I was complaining that after 10 years I wanted to finally remodel my bedroom and update the 40 year old bathroom. (Sorry too lazy to take the photo of my newly designed ceiling?)

Wednesday after camping out at one of the stores because the wind and rain by T.S. Fey made driving a bit too scary, I came out at the end of the day to see that someone (probably in a jacked up truck) had opened their truck door and with the bottom of their door struck Coop on the hood, dented him and left a deep gouge, took the paint right off. I wonder how I'm going to pass my lease inspection now.



As I stated earlier, for days this post has been swimming in my head, but as I said, I have been a bit confused if using the word Hubris was correct, but:
In its modern usage, hubris denotes overconfident pride and arrogance; it is often associated with a lack of knowledge combined with a lack of humility. An accusation of hubris often implies that suffering or punishment will follow, similar to the occasional pairing of hubris and nemesis in the Greek world. The proverb "pride goes before a fall" is thought to sum up the modern definition of hubris. In reference to someone being in hubrity: hubrity is a fulfillment of being hubristic or a continual behavior of being prideful.
So, as each day of this lovey week unfolded, I kept thinking that my hubris has brought upon the bad karma. Speaking of bad karma, I wished terrible things upon the person who damaged my car. Such terrible things, like venom inside my head, so terrible that it will probably bring more bad karma...

Oh pride is a terrible thing.

1 comment:

flit said...

Ouch! I'm sorry that happened to your car.

I think I recognize your English prof - not the man himself, but the type. Speaking of hubris :)