What The Flock Is Going On?
Look at them. Chances are they’ll be looking back at you. If, while you are looking for them, you notice that everybody is looking at you…well, there you go. You are the Black Sheep in that family. Congratulations.
How does one become The Black Sheep? It starts early. In those formative years when the other kids in the family are setting up little lemonade stands there is one tyke, boy or girl, who starts their own business selling newspapers. What’s so wrong with that? Nothing except that, our lone wolf entrepreneur is selling yesterday’s newspapers to unsuspecting adults.
Later on as most youngsters are trying out for the school teams and applying for Student Loans to finance their college years the Black Sheep in training is going it alone,
applying for little known and obscure scholarships so he or she graduates debt free. Every year there are scholarships worth millions of dollars that are never awarded because nobody applies for them.
(Here’s a tip to file away when it comes time to figure out how to pay for college. Apply for Golf Scholarships. Universities go begging for talented young golfers to play for the old Alma Mater.)
It is those “Go it alone” and “I’ll do it my way” youngsters who grow up only to be tagged as Black Sheep strictly because they haven’t done things the way that the Family expected of them.
OK…let’s be honest here. Yes, there are some Black Sheep out there who have taken that “I’ll do it my way” a little too far and ended up with numbers across their chest. They tend not to be available to attend those family events…at least until they can swing a parole. It happens.
I did a little, very little research into this whole concept. Why Black Sheep? What is so evil about a sheep with black wool? The general consensus that I’ve read says that it is just that nobody wanted to buy the wool from the black sheep. Not that they were evil or satanic or anything worthy of a Stephen King novel. No, they simply weren’t profitable.
In today’s society it really isn’t much different – the Black Sheep of the family doesn’t fit into the Family mold and if it doesn’t fit it can’t contribute to the Family well being. They aren’t profitable. If there is a Family business that loose cannon Black Sheep sure isn’t going to offered a seat on the Board of Directors. They might even be running a competing company. It happens.
My wife, the lovely and suddenly concerned, Dawn, asked me if I was the Black Sheep in my family. I gave her an honest answer: “Not exactly. I was more of a…Gray Sheep. It was me who had that shady newspaper operation going when I was ten years old.”