The Ernest Factor

authorpicTruth be told, I am a huge underdog supporter. I suppose the reason for this is that I have always felt like one myself and seemingly always bucking the system. Hence a true nonconformist.

Heck, I root for the Mets and that should be telling enough.

I suppose it is the same reason I love any movie either John Candy or Jim Varney (aka Ernest) ever was in. I’m sure John Candy’s work is well know by most people but Jim’s work maybe not so much so outside of “Ernest Goes to Camp”. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit it but I have (I believe) every movie he was in including, Ernest Goes to camp, saves Christmas, joins the army, goes to jail, goes to school, slam dunk Ernest, Rides again, goes to Africa and scared stupid. I also have the movies Jim wasn’t Ernest in like, the “Beverly Hillbillies”, the little known “Snowboard Academy” and his last movie before his premature death at the hands of cancer “Treehouse Hostage”. I also have the DVD that includes all of the TV shows he did way back when.

Almost to a fault, his character tended to have the following characteristics, underdog, underappreciated and taken for granted, not too bright, accident prone, unassuming yet trying to act like he had his stuff together, more than a bit out of step with the world and reality as well as friend challenged (There is generally only Vern who we never see but whom we assume only puts up with him).

Sure there is a lot not to like about such a character but it is the flip side of his character that endears Ernest to me. He is completely dedicated and loyal, he is always trying to make something of himself and prove his self-worth, he is honest and trustworthy, kind, wouldn’t hurt a fly intentionally, forgiving, willing to put his neck on the line for others and most of all gentle and loving.

I think all too often in society we are attracted to the ones who seem to have their proverbial shit together, have power, wealth, position and celebrity status.

In reality the folks I believe we should be more drawn to and emulate are the Ernest’s of the world. With all of their flaws, seeming vulnerabilities and limitations they are the ones I’d love to have as a friend and have my back. Their not the ones who tend to start wars, hate someone because they’re not like them. They are the ones like Ernest who want to “to shape and mold others into a focused world view” as long as “they just give a fellow a chance”.

This whole Ernest thing really hit home for me this past week with all of the police shootings and police being attacked events that occurred. In truth, all lives matter and I believe it’s the Ernest’s of the world who help demonstrate that notion.

Thanks for checking in this week. I hope it’s a great one filled with love and hope. I hope to see you back here again next week.

Aloha, Paul

About authorpaulhayden

Author, artist, screenwriter, environmentalist. husband, father, surfer, surfing instructor, volunteer.
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