Pueblo is a small town and, like any small town, it has its share of folks who like to think they are the center of our universe. You know who they are. They are mentioned or pictured frequently in The Pueblo Chieftain attending various functions, giving their opinions on issues, promising to fix some neighborhood problem or being named to some sort of board or commission.
You can’t miss them at the big banquet fundraisers for various charities, because lots of people make it a point to get close enough to shake their hands and say "hello." These much sought-after folks like to call each other the “major players” in town. So I guess it would naturally follow that the rest of us are minor players, or maybe even “nobodies.”
Every once in a while, I have what I like to call “flashes of brilliance.” You know what I mean, because you have them too. You’re reading the newspaper or attending a meeting or watching TV news and suddenly you have an idea about how some problem in town could be solved.
But you don’t really take any action on it because you’ve been conditioned to believe that only certain people, organizations or companies are major players, and nothing can be accomplished without their backing, or at least their endorsement. (And, of course, many of them require your donations.)
Hogwash! The real major players are folks like the woman who walks around Pueblo West every single morning, rain or shine, and picks up litter. Or the little boy killed in the Boston Marathon bombing, who had been pictured just the week before holding up a hand-made sign that said: “People should stop hurting each other.” Or the person who sits on the curb and talks to a homeless person and lets the homeless person use her phone to call home, instead of just throwing a dollar at that person as she drives by.
Those are the real major players, the people who are really making a difference. And they’re all around you every day, doing whatever they can to make Pueblo a cleaner, safer, happier place for us all to live. They’re trying to find a grocery store to move to the East Side, they’re finding neighborhood locations for family recreation, they’re joining Neighborhood Watch, and they’re doing it all without recognition or pay.
So when you have an idea that might just make the world a better place, try it. If it doesn’t work, try something else. But don’t underestimate yourself. If you lighten the burden of just one person, that’s more than a lot of those so-called major players have done. And just think what could be accomplished if all us nobodies get together.
Here’s what I tell myself whenever I think I don’t have enough money or power or influence to accomplish something: Speak up. Defy hate. Demand justice. Tell the truth. Be kind. Play fair. Seek peace. (I have that list tattooed on my leg, just in case I forget. I’m getting old and absent minded, you know.)
Since retiring from careers as an insurance executive and a senior management executive of a large multi-use entertainment venue, Emily Price keeps busy as an activist and community advocate for social and political causes.