Be like Mac

A lot of people are good at planning ahead, versus just staying loose and keeping an open mind. A lot of people are logical, versus illogical. Some people are creative thinkers, versus creative on paper. Some people have morals, ethics, and compassion for others when they’re on-the-clock, then drop these traits when they’re off-the-clock. Sure, we all have our own idols in life and I know I had an idol – TV idol, that is. He was a mix of action-Boy Scout hero and was very much alive from the mid-1980s-through-early 1990s. His name was MacGyver, but his friends called him “Mac.”

MacGyver was a great action hero because he didn’t use violence to fight, but the power of his mind to fight the bad guys in order to get himself and others to safety. He used a Swiss army knife to help improvise his way through problems. He even made time to reach out to others in need and mentor people in later seasons. I enjoyed the show because he was an action-Boy Scout hero. He was a hero with a difference. He basically was a mediator. There aren’t many TV show characters like MacGyver anymore. When MacGyver used weapons, the weapons were used as tools to divert himself and others to safety. He often put others first, before himself.

In one episode, his boss, Peter Thorton, said, “It’s time we think like MacGyver. His mind doesn’t work like yours or mine.”

The last few weeks-to-a couple months, I’ve been comparing myself to my TV idol. We, as staff for the MHCC student newspaper, The Advocate, are supposed to write something that’s never been written before.

And so, as I compared myself in society and how I handle or rather cope in society in all sorts of ways, well, I noticed similarities in my TV idol. I think MacGyver may have had ADHD, or a possible case of autism. He was never organized, he always improvised, or rather survived, at the last minute: ADHD trait. For me, this was the excitement of the character and show. My place always looks like a bomb went off, but I am always pulling things off at the last minute.

He was also intuitive: ADHD trait. It was hard to figure out on what he was going to do next. He had lots of empathy and sympathy: autistic trait. He had a lot of morals and ethics on- and off-the-clock. He was a loner with few friends and solved problems solo: autistic trait.

MacGyver likes to help, and even resolve conflicts (make friends with enemies if possible), not get even or seek revenge on others: autistic trait.

In real life, MacGyver wouldn’t last long without assistance from people like his boss, Thorton, who value him as a human and his mind.   

So, beyond “thinking like MacGyver,” it’s just as important for more of us to believe in and support people we may know who share his valuable traits.

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