Blemishes and Character

When I finished law school in 2006, my parents gave me a nice graduation gift. I penned many of the most important documents with it: wrote essays on the bar exam, signed my mortgage documents, and signed several partnership agreements. It has become a totem.

Penned character

A few weeks ago, I chipped base of the cap, and I’ve spent time since trying to think about how to repair it. I wanted to make it look “new” again. It can’t, however, be used consistently for eight years and remain in pristine condition (in my hands at least).

When a car is dented or a guitar is scratched we say, “it gives them character.” I really haven’t given the expression much thought. More than anything else, I’ve thought it was a way to soften the irritation, but the saying is true of more than just objects.

The little dings in our pride or life’s hard lessons are markers of character.  We won’t get out of this life unscathed: we will be broken and rebuilt, scratched and healed, and devastated and restored. The way we cope with our adversity won’t make us new again, but it will define us–warts and all.

Jeremy Floyd

Jeremy Floyd is the President at FUNYL Commerce. Formerly, he was the CEO and President of Lirio, Bluegill Creative, a marketing and communications firm in Knoxville, Tennessee. In addition to managing the digital strategies, Floyd was an adjunct professor for the University of Tennessee Chattanooga MBA program teaching digital strategies and social media. Floyd blogs at and tweets under the name @jfloyd. Jeremy is licensed to practice law in the State of Tennessee and holds a law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from MTSU in English and Philosophy.

  • Mike Asbury


  • Thanks Mike!

  • Matthew Dillon

    I’m learning this lesson every day. Thank you for the reminder!

  • Boy, it’s hard to see it in the moment.