Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Makers, Breakers, and Doormats


Quiche Florentine | recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #breakfast 


 Rules are made to be broken. I'm not sure when I first heard that saying, but I know I've heard it many times. 

Now I'm not talking about "i" before "e," except after "c," or when sounding like "a," as in "neighbor" and "weigh. Although, if you're going to talk about rules, that's a perfect example of a rule, not only made to be broken, but that actually includes the rule for breaking the rule. Yikes.

What I am referring to is that space below the level of laws, but above the level of suggestions. Rules.

It's actually General Douglas MacArthur who is credited with the quote. Said, it's thought, to justify unsanctioned actions. I'm not sure why it's lived on, I mean, as persuasive excuses go, that one strikes me as pretty lame. It probably is used so frequently because it's sort of the one-size-fits-all of excuses.

So, I often wondered, if they're so often broken, why make them? 

Well, most communities, micro and macro, over and above laws, need some level of structure. Schools have them, neighborhoods do, and we make them ourselves in our homes, especially when raising children.

At schools, you wait your turn in line, don't cheat on tests, don't write in the books. 

In neighborhoods, you don't snow blow your driveway onto the street for the plow to deposit at the end of someone else's driveway (broken by my neighbor on the left). You don't blow all the leaves from your trees off of your driveway and lawn onto the neighbor's lawn (broken by my neighbor on the right).

And at home, you don't just put your spoon in the dishwasher when there are dirty dishes in the sink (Hubs, I'm looking at you). And you don't put dinner in the oven and then go out to do errands.


Quiche Florentine | recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #breakfast
Quiche Florentine

Because we do need to acknowledge that most rules do have a practical purpose. Some about safety, others just about avoiding chaos.

But, of course, they're broken. More and more frequently. All of them. 
And I've been noticing a stark change, a shift in attitudes towards behavioral restrictions, functional organization, and the resulting compliance, or growing lack thereof.

There are certain people who just think that rules are made for everyone else, not them. And for those of us, like me, who are generally rule followers (don't roll your eyes, I said "generally"), it makes for a really frustrating existence.

Did you know that MacArthur's quote has a second part? I didn't. It's actually "rules are made to be broken, and are too often for the lazy to hide behind."

I kinda resent that second part, feels awful judgy, demeaning even.
Hiding, moral compass, or upbringing, no matter what makes rule followers do so, many are starting to feel like chumps. The more we see those around us reap the benefits of doing whatever they want, and benefiting from that freedom, the more any constraints erode. Jeopardizing safety and moving the balance toward chaos.  

I know the saying is about "assume," but it seems as though it's "responsible" that makes an ass of you and me. A doormat, anyway.

Makers, Breakers, and Doormats | graphic designed by, featured on, and property of www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics #blogging

In our current social climate, where self-service rules, and few understand the value, and obligation, of "do unto others as you'd have others do unto you" (anyone heard of the Golden Rule?), more people, far too many people, are following suit. Not even feeling at all obliged to justify. Rules, after all, are made to be broken.
If not followed by all, rules take on an ominous function, used to bind, to control, and to manipulate. Breaking us into three camps, a caste system of sorts: the makers, the breakers, and the followers.
Many of the makers are breakers. The breakers are growing exponentially. Many of the followers have had enough. 

Not really conducive to a functioning society.

I know I said this wasn't about laws, specifically anyway, but there are too many parallels to ignore. Law makers don't follow rules of decorum, of the peoples' house in which they (self) serve, of common decency, or of the laws by which they expect the rest of us to live. When it comes to that higher level of rule making, our laws, and our current crop of law makers, I have my own version of that quote:

Rules are made to be broken by those who make the rules in the first place, to achieve their ultimate goal:
Not to protect, not to defend, just, quite simply, to rule.

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Quiche Florentine    

Printable Recipe

1 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 TBSP grated parmesan
2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 stick butter, chopped
1 TBSP milk

6 oz frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
1/3 cup frozen chopped onion, defrosted
1 TBSP flour
1/2 cup mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
3 slices (about 2 oz) provolone cheese, chopped
6 eggs
1 cup milk
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

*Grease your quiche dish.
*Whisk together 1 1/4 cups of flour, the sugar, 1/8 tsp of salt, 1 TBSP grated parmesan, and the Italian seasoning. Add the chopped butter to the bowl and allow to sit for about an hour for the butter to start to soften.
*Add 1 TBSP milk to the dough ingredients and mix together until it starts to form a dough. Place between 2 pieces of wax paper and roll out to about an 11 inch circle. Remove the top piece of wax paper, and carefully place into the prepared quiche dish, dough side down. Remove the top piece of wax paper and gently press the dough into and 3/4 of the way up the sides of the dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
*Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
*Firmly press the spinach between paper towels a few times to remove as much liquid as possible. Place in a large bowl. Do the same with the onions. 
*Sprinkle 1 TBSP flour onto the crust, then sprinkle with the provolone, and finally the mushrooms.
*To the bowl with the spinach and onions, add the eggs, 1 cup milk, 1/4 cup parmesan, 3/4 tsp salt, the pepper, and the cayenne. Whisk together well and pour into the crust.
*Bake for 45 minutes, the quiche should be completely set. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before slicing.



  1. Scary and true, Karen. There are always consequences that accompany the rule breaking. But sadly, many of those consequences don't kick in until later. Sometimes years later. And they take down more than the initial rule breakers.

  2. Excellent points.

    Is this the logical outcome of the "me generation," the idea of doing what feels good to me at the moment, only caring about my good, not caring about harm to others (or the environment, for that matter)? I ask as a point of discussion, not because i pretend to have the answer or any answers at all.

    1. I have had that thought as well, and I definitely feel that's a piece of the puzzle. But to be that thoughtless, uncaring, and manipulative, some of that lack of respect, empathy, morality, makes me think that there has to be an inherent deficit at play here as well, one that's been nurtured and fueled, possibly through a lack of consequences (even rewards) for that kind of behavior.

  3. I don't blame all of this on the pandemic (power hungry people have always been with us) but it seems to have brought out an amazing amount of "me first and to (blank) with you" behavior that doesn't seem to be winding down. I can still remember the people who didn't quite care that the elderly were dying by the thousands because, well, they were old so who cares? And people would be proud of having that attitude! Lack of consequences when people can spew endless hate online and the tragic ends it sometimes leads to is another thing.

    1. It's a lot of things, including getting away with blatantly and publicly defying rules, laws, and norms resulting in gains instead of losses. No need to even pretend to be PC any more, hatred, bigotry . . . the are no constraints any more.

  4. I'm seeing more and more people who feel they are entitled and rules don't apply to them.

    1. At this point, we're bringing out the worst in each other.

  5. I see a lot of people especially around here that feel the rules don't apply to them and the rules should be changed, especially for them because they don't like them. It's ridiculous.

    1. Yes, this pervasive "it's all about me" attitude is not conducive to a functioning society.


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