"It is not the critic who count; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives Valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly...." - Theodore Roosevelt, The Man in the Arena
My name is Scottie Jordan and I’m a 28 year old Texan living in Los Angeles, California. I grew up in a small town right outside of Dallas called Mansfield, TX.
My parents had me at a young age and neither were in the position to raise a young child. When I was a baby my father was sent to prison and he is still there to this day, serving a life sentence. Now just so we’re clear, I’ve worked hard at forgiving my Dad and I love him very much. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him and for that, I’m grateful.
Growing up without a Dad can be very difficult for a young kid. I remember not really understanding why he wasn’t there. When I was younger, I recall leaving the prison after a visit and crying in the car ride home because I just wanted what every other kid had, a Dad. Someone to talk to or play catch with. Someone to take me fishing or to help me with my homework. Not having this relationship with my father really took a toll on me emotionally. I was angry, sad, confused, and I had very low self-esteem. BUT..…what I did have was the most amazing mother any child could ever hope for. My Mom saw the effect my Dad's incarceration was having on me so she did her very best to raise me the best way she could.
Working multiple jobs to put food on the table and a roof over my head, I now realize that all the extra love she gave me was because she knew I needed it. She didn’t let being a single Mom, and all the pain & obstacles that come with it, stop her from loving me the way she knew I needed to be loved. My Mom passed away on Sunday April 10, 2011 after a difficult 2 year battle with cancer. It was the hardest day of my life, but it was an eye opener to how short our time is on this Earth.
That said, this is why I've created The Gentlementour. I understand how difficult and challenging it can be for teenagers to grow up and become Gentlemen who respect others and respect themselves. I understand how not making a sports team or failing a test or getting dumped by your boyfriend or girlfriend can make you feel like you’re not good enough. I also understand how hard it is growing up without a father or a mother. I understand because I was one of these kids and I went through these things, just like they do.
This is why The Gentlementour exists --- to let young kids know that they are good enough, and that no matter what comes their way, we’re in this together.