Arrogance vs humility

“I’ve got the biggest muscles, the smartest brain, an inexhaustible stamina and the longest penis; if you dragged me behind ten horses I could plow a thousand acres with my stiff rod. Follow me and I’ll lead you to greatness!”

“I’m no one in particular, but I’m pretty sure that that first fellow is lying his ass off. I’m fairly wise and I’ll lead you where I think it’s safe and prosperous, but I offer no guarantees nor promises of sanctuary or fulfillment.”

“I’m the most fertile, most skilled, most versatile female you’ll ever find. My vagina can field strip and clean an M-16 in under a minute. Follow me and your land will flow with grain and populate with beasts of burden, you will never want nor suffer drought nor famine.”

“I can advise you to how to plant and grow your crops, raise your children and strive for a fulfilling life. And unlike that first woman, I may err at times, but my heart is true and I’ll never deceive you.”


Alright, I had to go there. Those visions, when I had them, just struck me as hilarious. But their personifications provides me with the fodder for my argument, which is, why do we scoff at arrogance but gravitate toward humility?

If that first couple showed up on the world’s stage, wouldn’t you think that, holy shit! These folks have got it goin’ on. They must be near-enough to gods!

But that couldn’t be further from the truth. We despise arrogance and bravado. Yet, one would think, that such attributes would have somehow tracked through our genetic history much more often than meekness and humility. The strong and forthright prevail right?

No, they don’t seem to. Somehow we detect the falseness, the insincerity of their claims. Even toned down ten-fold we’d still be put off by that couple. Why? Good looking, virile, fertile, single minded and determined — why would we disdain them?

Somehow we are attracted to those who demure their prowess, who are self-effacing. Those who would rather shift the accolades away from themselves and onto others, others who might be worthy, but not as worthy. An unassuming hero or heroine is so much more appealing than one who is vain or pretentious. Even though the deed might deserve declaration at the highest order.

What is it in us that favors the mild mannered legend rather than the haughty demigod?



14 thoughts on “Arrogance vs humility

  1. I think when you say “we despise arrogance and bravado” and “we detect the falseness, the insincerity of their claims,” you are talking about you and I, and some others that we know. The truth is, roughly 32% of Americans (probably more), every single person who supported and still supports the idiot-in-chief, glorify arrogance and bravado. They cannot detect the falseness or insincerity of claims. Many actually see a reflection of their own over-inflated self-images, drawn high by insecurity.

    But we, the wise – I have no qualms about calling ourselves that – see through the mirage. We saw through it from the beginning, implored the inane to pierce the veil, to no avail.

    We are drawn to the humble because, like them, we value and embrace our own shortcomings and utilize those traits to attempt to make ourselves, and those around us, better.

    At least, that’s the way I see it. The world according to Tom. It’s a great take. The best take. That take alone could plow a thousand acres. 😎

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think “humanness” is en vogue at the moment. Even at that they didn’t exactly choose a self-depricating person for the US presidency… For most of history, I think people liked to follow the strongest. The problem with is if there is nothing to back it up. If they do have something to offer that makes us believe that they do indeed have those ploughing/field stripping skills, they’re in business.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. > For most of history follow the strongest…
      Yes, I agree there. So, let’s just take the attributes of intelligence or some craft or technical skill — surgeon for instance. Maybe this surgeon truly is the best at their job. But how the present themselves, arrogant or humble, makes considerable difference in how we treat them. I wonder why?


  3. “Men want to be me. Women want to do me.” Ahh….that was me back in the day. ‘Nuff said about that…and that tells you what category I fell into. Just’ sayin’ Might as well fess up and be honest about it.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. Good point. At this age and situation, WP seems to be providing, and this is sad as hell I’m thinking, the lion’s share of my sociality. I sit in a self-made prison and type. I don’t even have yard-time or a cafeteria where I can throw food.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. LOL! It is sad as hell, and we’re in the same prison. But I do try to get out once in awhile. Have meaningless conversations with people who really don’t give a shit. I hope your self made prison is, at the minimum, comfortable…

            Liked by 1 person

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