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Maturity and Responsibility

In a terrific InfoQ.com talk on software craftsmanship, Kevlin Henney uttered a great line: “Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional.” In a Twitter exchange on the topic, @dancres concocted an equi-wise line: “I like ‘growing old disgracefully’“.

At age 55, as all you two regular readers well know, I have yet to exercise my option. At this point in time, I have no plan to ever exercise it. Hell, I’m not even sure I have a choice in the matter. For all I know, my genetic core may forbid it.

The reason I abhor the  concepts of “growing up” and “getting your shit together” is  because my main motivational force comes from Dick Werthimer: “The purpose of life is to fight maturity“. Another reason is that I don’t equate “growing up” (aka marching toward maturity) with “becoming more responsible“, or child-like with child-ish.  I think one can be simultaneously immature AND responsible. A third reason is that I’ve watched family and friends “grow up” over the years and I’m not thrilled with the patterns of bland, too-serious behavior that “growing up” leads to.

Goo Goo Gah

How about you, dear reader? What are your thoughts on the relationship between maturity and responsibility?

  1. March 17, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Anthony, couldn’t agree more. I have often made the point to others that “I’m child like, not childish”. And if I act childish or silly, it is entirely on purpose. Its amazing how many people can’t see that, mainly ladder climber types who care more about pointless advancement than anything. They are “professional”, and I am not.

    • March 17, 2014 at 3:20 pm

      I’m glad someone agrees with me once in a blue moon 🙂 IMO, “professional” is a vague word. Sort of like “agile” and “business value”.

  2. Rainee
    March 17, 2014 at 8:39 am

    Maturity to me means liberation from old restraints. Being my true self – sometimes serious, sometimes playful, sometimes rebellious 🙂

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