This post is a total whine so if that’s like nails on a chalkboard to you, I’d advise you move to another page. And I get it. I’m no fan of whiners. And I’m no fan of myself when I become one, but I do try to use this space to get it out so I can deal with people in a healthy way. So, yeah, fair warning.
For someone who hates to admit when people get to her, it’s amazing how much they actually do. I would love to be a tough chick who doesn’t get my feelings hurt or suffer insecurity. And sometimes I am. But sometimes I cry. And my poor mother has to listen to it. (You’re a saint, mom.)
I used to know this kid — this guy — but circumstances changed (driven in part, possibly in large part, by actions he took and decisions he made) and we went our separate ways. This wasn’t a romantic situation, by the way. Just someone I knew. Anyway, when the situation changed, things got harder for me and I was pretty annoyed at the developments that led to the change. But I guess I’ve been through enough in my life to know that it’s best to just walk away and try not to look back when circumstances are dark and beyond your control. And so I did. I gave it some thought, got my head right about it, and washed my hands of it.
Well this kid seems not to have done the same. I keep seeing him — Friday was the most recent — to the point that I’m pretty sure it’s not coincidence. My belief is that he’s trying to force a run in. And what makes that bad is that I’m reasonably certain it’s not out of a real interest in how I am. No, I think it’s one of two things, neither good: He wants to either be a reminder of something difficult or he has a guilty conscience and wants me to ease it for him by letting him know I don’t hate him. How do I know this? Because I know him.
But here’s the thing — there was a time in my life I would have helped him feel better. But that girl is gone because she has to be. I have the capacity to forgive a lot of things. But you, kiddo, crossed a line. And you have to deal with what that means — in this case, you don’t get to know me and I have no interest in talking to you just short of politeness if I’m absolutely forced into dealing with you — because if you don’t deal with the reality that actions have consequences, you’ve learned nothing. And I always tried to help you learn. Because I cared about you and I wanted to see you become a good man. Consider this my parting gift and final lesson in that regard.
Anyway, as much as I like to believe these things don’t hurt me, they do. And they cause me to have rebellious dreams as if I’m still a teenager who wants to run away from home, and I’m far too old and have too many other things to concentrate on to have to negotiate those feelings.
Interestingly, this boy is a member of the millennial generation and I just read this and he’s a pretty good example of what I think about the selfie gen. Obviously painting an entire group with one broad brush is ill-advised — I count as friends some members of this group and they’re absolutely lovely people — but there does seem to be a hardness to these kids in general. And I think the constant me-ness inherent in the taking of selfies (which, to Gillespie’s point, really is driven by the technology rather than some over developed sense of awesomeness in these kids), is representative of that. What I mean is, the kids I’ve known who take a million selfies do it not because they love themselves, but because, after taking 20 or 30 shots they finally alight on one where they look perfect and cool. And this makes them happy. And that’s what they’re after. That fleeting moment where they look like a star to themselves, and they hope to others, and they’ve not had to do much to feel that way, save adjusting the angle of their jaw or applying the right filter. And there’s no joy in that.
So the whole Stephen Colbert thing has just fascinated me. I like Colbert. I think he’s very funny (and not racist. Sigh.), even though his politics drive me crazy because he seems to reason only insofar as his worldview is justified and then the narrative ends. But I think what’s fascinating is that the people who turned on him are HIS PEOPLE. That’s what being arrogant gets you. The belief that there’s honor among thieves, so to speak. You have to very careful walking around people who tend to drop eggshells wherever they go. But the truth is this: he did nothing even remotely approaching the entire movie Blazing Saddles, as brilliant a satire on race relations as exists in any medium. Which probably says something about the culture (there’s that broad brush again…).
A friend of mine sent this to me regarding what may be driving Putin’s aggression. And it’s rather brilliant and makes a great deal of sense. By way of explanation, it’s compelling. But what it doesn’t get into — and what I think Peggy Noonan touches on a little more — is the why. And the what now.
So turns out my Pops agrees with Mark Cuban that the NFL may implode in 10 years, but not because of an expanded television package. He thinks it will come from repeated attempts to smear the sport regarding injury, cultural sensitivity, and the push to unionize at the college level etc. and et al. Speaking of, this just made me laugh. I mean a pundit should really know what happened to Detroit.
Ha, this is why I try really hard not to complain too much. Because I really don’t want to be like Gwyneth Paltrow. I mean her silliness is harmless I guess. But not impressive. I’m not even sure she was trying to say she has it harder necessarily. But the implication that she somehow suffers is there. And really, hon, what I would give to suffer your life. I could probably even make the paparazzi and loneliness and all the other celebrity associated things work if I didn’t have to worry about how my rent and bills were going to be paid and I could go on a reasonable vacation to see loved ones or just get to the beach so I don’t go insane. And I sure as shit wouldn’t be complaining about it publicly. As my friend Shana noted, you need a publicist in that bubble of yours that leaves the comfort of your world sometimes and checks out the way things are on the other side and can advise you on what you should and shouldn’t say. Give it some thought.