Quite cynically, I could have called this blog post ‘Of Cynicism’. But, to avoid that, is my exact purpose in writing this.
I can be quite a lot to take. I know. I can feel the awkwardness whenever I step into a room, or any degree of a social circle, any unit of civilization. I can feel their perceptions transmitted to me, “Who is this oddity? She looks plain, but she thinks too highly of herself.” They can sense my nervousness, but any pity they might have felt is quickly dispelled, when I open my mouth to speak. This deep, raspy voice begins, it speaks at the speed of light, alternating between stutters and a BBC broadcaster, with a propensity to giggle nearly constantly, whatever the situation. Any textbook introvert is relieved at my exit, anyone given to b*tchiness delighted at some new material to ridicule.
But, it all has to come from somewhere, and I can’t only label it as pop psychology’s favourite term: self-loathing. Happiness can even be self-induced, self-infectious, and my giggling can make me warm and fuzzy inside. You see, I think I’ve solved it. I think I understand why I am a lot to take, why I can’t adjust to everyday cynicism as a normal person. Why I, sometimes, feel I have the value system of 90s Disney films, even if I haven’t watched most of them. This is it:
People go on and on about how writing, and the arts in general, is about self-expression. It certainly is an expression, and whether you express your Self in it or not, it certainly came from you. I have a frustration, a hunger. I’ve had it for years, and it only keeps getting stronger. But, my Self, and my Expression are two parallel streams that never seem to converge. When they converge for other people, they have epiphanies, beliefs, purpose, love, finished books etc. But, I just have these two, conflicting halves that never meet, of a single self that cannot conveniently be termed manic-depressive, or by some personality disorder.
And so, I try to take it positively. At least, I try to accept it, since there is no way of curing myself of either one of the halves, or keeping them in check. It is said that mood disorders are like the weather, you never know when the storms will come, or when it will be sunny again. But, that sort of duality doesn’t exist for me, because they co-exist. I’m enthusiastic in my melancholy, and I’m enthusiastic in my enthusiasm. But, even my melancholy cannot take the cynicism of this world.
Only a small incident sparked this giant reflection. Someone was rude to me. They acted as though I was beneath them, and undeserving of their civility, much less, respect. I was quick to reason, for as life has show so far in synergy with my Disney values, there is no profession or station in life in this world that justifies such behaviour. Even if you cure cancer, end hunger or are an alien secretly ruling this planet, it is always your insecurity that drives such arrogance, and no magnitude of achievement can justify it. But, why does it still hurt? Because, I smile too much. I talk too much. I am too civil.
I don’t need to be. I can throw my weight around too. I can believe I’m better than everyone else, as some seem to suspect anyway. Hey, it might even give me the courage and confidence to finish those books. I know there is much to change. That, this natural enthusiasm for life, this Disneyness of it all, has to be tempered. If possible, removed. And an adult cynicism to take its place, and make things a lot easier in reality. However, please allow me this last piece of civility: F*** you. F*** your embittered arrogance, your zombie-like existence, your cruelty towards anybody who wants to make anything more out of their lives, your insatiable negative enthusiasm at anybody wanting to be slightly less miserable in life than you. You can take your cynical attitude and shove it up your already occupied-with-a-stick backside. You can’t change, and I won’t change either to please you. We’ll just have to agree to disagree, though I suspect you’ll keep thinking you’re right and I’m wrong. And I agree with you, because I’ll keep thinking that too.
How do you handle cynicism?