"Neither a man nor a crowd nor a nation can be trusted to act humanely or to think sanely under the influence of a great fear." -- Bertrand Russell
It doesn't happen that often that I am stumped for a column topic, but when it does, it SUCKS. For the last two days, possible story ideas have entered and just as quickly left my mind. I'll light on an okay idea and then realize it would be impossible to stretch it out for 1500 words. Yes, it's true I work well under pressure, but the antagonistic voice in the back of my head asks, "what if you can't come up with anything?
But I always do, at least I have ever week for the past year and a half or so, and I need to trust in that consistency and not freak out. Still. It can be stressful.
All of the things I want to write about are inappropriate for my forum. Like the so-called honor killings in Pakistan and how revolting I find these "women-as-property" conservative religious cultures to be, including fanatical Christianity. Like my own atheism and impatience for any type of religious zealot or hypocritical, half-assed practicing person. Like old friends I can't stand anymore -- they haven't changed, but I have. Like all the annoying, plastic people in Fashion Valley, those moronic women in huge SUVs who can't pull a simple maneuver in under 30 minutes. Like the fact that my recent inability to spend any of my precious time with people who are anything less than emotionally, intellectually, or artistically stimulating to me has left my call list very, very short. Like what it's really like to be an HOA president when people forget you're performing a community service and begin to treat you like some sort of employee.
Like I said, these aren't really appropriate topics for my column, not to mention, I would alienate more people than I feel like alienating at this point. It's not like I don't care what people think. But it's true that I don't care about those people. I feel sometimes like I'm caring less and less these days, and I wonder what that says about the person I'm becoming.
I care less about offending someone than I do about being honest with myself. And I see that as a good thing. I'm beginning to care less about whether or not some people "like me" and starting to realize instead that I don't like them, and therefore, it shouldn't matter. I'm also starting to realize that it's okay for me to not like everybody, just as I can't expect for everybody to like me.
Let's just say, and it's taken me years to get here, that there is very, very little shit I am willing to put up with these days. Self-generated drama, people who are always up and down, people who are insincere, people with whom I no longer have anything in common aside from a colorful past, people who consistently make poor decisions in life and then envy me for those decisions that have placed me here, where I am -- successful in my own right, striving to learn and improve myself, my work, without bitching about what I don't know or haven't done, happy in a healthy, loving relationship with no strife or arguments with a partner who has become my best friend, crawling out of debt but for the most part, financially stable, physically healthy, emotionally healthy, happy with my work, happy with my home, happy with myself... HAPPY.
Miserable people need not apply. As my father frequently says, where you focus your attention is what increases in your life. And this little exercise has helped me greatly, because I just thought of a good topic to write about for my column -- my dad.