Showing posts with label Roger Bushell. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Roger Bushell. Show all posts

Friday, March 23, 2012

Hidden Talents

We all have gifts and talents that are perhaps unique to other people, perhaps the same, perhaps what sets us apart. Some talents just seem to come naturally while others are mastered or simply given up on.  Unfortunately some talents go unrecognized or are lost due to lack of sharing.

          Jenna is really great with math.  I pushed her into believing that it is awesome so that she might understand it on her own.  She starts third grade next year and I’m thinking it may become too complex for my brain.

          Math is something I didn’t figure I would ever ask her brothers to assistance for. Math is just NOT their forte.  Actually I am more confident in my own math skills than I would ever be in Biff’s.  His talent lies within animal charmer and puzzle awareness.

          Lately Jenna’s math homework has consisted with fractions.  The example showed the shape being broken into other shapes (ex. A hexagon divided into 6 triangles) The first two problems showed two shapes – the first was two to six times bigger than the second shape – the fraction.  Jenna drew lines over the first shape to make shapes equal to the second (ex – 2 triangles in a square).  The first two problems had shapes that could be drawn into the first shape in equal amounts.  It was the two shapes on the third problem which threw both of us off.


          As I was trying to find the second shape (diamond/rhombus) inside of the first shape (a trapezoid) I just wasn’t getting it.  Biff came into the room and I handed him the paper and asked him to figure it – knowing full well that he would have it within seconds – which he did.  Oh, so obvious.  A diamond and triangle made up the trapezoid – or three triangles.  The second shape was 1/3 of the first shape.  Certainly we would have gotten it eventually – but not near as quickly as he did.  How awesome is that?

          We had discovered Biff’s “hidden” talent the day that Jenna brought home a puzzle ball – which she broke apart before I could even look at it.  Roland and I struggled with the six pieces trying to turn it back into a ball while Biff had put it together three times in less than one minute (while Jenna enthusiacally broke it apart each time and eagerly watching Biff put it back together again)

          Jenna has been able to draw and cut out perfect looking hearts since she was three. I still have a hard time with hearts – unless I am tracing a heart shaped box or template.  Drawing and cutting are not talents that I possess.  I have always admired those that draw well and those who continue to make it a talent.  I think all of my family members draw well.  My brother’s wife and children also have artistic talent.

          And then there’s the talent of making friends – having others drawn to you out of respect or pleasure.  This is a talent that seems to come naturally for my husband, my sister-in-law and youngest son.  Others struggle with trying to make new friends or socialize at all.  But it is a talent that can be developed.

             There’s the talent of being able to recognize and utilize the talents of others.  One of the best examples of someone who possessed the talent of being able to recognize and utilize the talents of others was Roger Bushell, who was a flight lieutenant with the 601 Squadron in the British military.



          Roger had many talents – academically, athletic, his passion for flying and a talent for defending the accused. When he was sent to an “escape proof” prison camp in November 1942.  His master mind is what inspired the movie, “The Great Escape” which included many details that were actually used among the prisoners under his direction.

          He was able to scout out and utilize the talents of every single prisoner – even those who claimed they wanted nothing to do with his plan.  Some (such as the character “Hilts”, a prisoner portrayed by Steve McQueen) were certain they could escape without the assistance or aide or the other 300 – 600 who planned to escape out the tunnel.  Bushell also used that to his advantage explaining that if the soldiers kept their focus on the “Hilts” of the camp, they may not notice the teamwork taking place into digging and building the tunnels among other things.

          It’s important for each of us to share our talents with others.  To give and take and learn from and appreciate one another. I hope one day to recognize and utilize others’ talents as did Bushell.  What a marvelous gift!