I read Jen Maidenberg’s blog this morning which came off the heels of another reflective moment in my life. If you haven’t had the opportunity, I do recommend paying her a visit. She’s nice. She won’t bite, which should be a delightful change of pace from me who enjoys mouthing you like an Akita. Get your sanitary wipes out; I slobber.
As I’m sure those who have read my work (even in passing) would simply be shocked to find out I can be cheeky, facetious, and otherwise socially unnerving, I can also be quite kind, considerate, and all-around genuine. Well, last night had me sending an apology to a person of whom I have known for three years. The problem is I tend to think we have some personality traits in common, and for people like us that can rub. I may have been a bit over-the-top with the cheek and irritated the Hell out of her.
How does it relate to Jen? It plays off the idea of secrets. There’s a concern that if we share our secrets with others, then they will shun us or there’s the fear they will shun us. More and more, I feel like the worker that can’t hold the wood in his arms anymore, the guy who blows his nose loudly in a restaurant, or the old man who walks around in his underwear and boots. Some say that’s being “tired of life.” I prefer to call it “etiquette burnout.”
It takes energy to work with everyone around me. Most of it is spent making sure everyone is comfortable by having me as company. As suggested, I think I hit a wall sometime ago. It would have to be in the fashion of Loony Tunes, as that exaggeration describes the feeling well: the crash and slide down as the reel-to-reel grinds to a halt.
So, when I think the opportunity arrives to metaphorically show up in my magenta, polyester sweatpants and flip-flops I take it. Unfortunately, there’s always a limit to being yourself around company. I took too many liberties, and dare say went a Rascal too far. After thinking about it, my mind is now in two camps: the young and the old. The young part of me still wants to cooperate with the rest of the civilized world while the 85 year-old me is taking a nap with the words “as is” written on his forehead.
This doesn’t seem right for a 35 year-old man, yet oddly honest from this side of the fence.
I started off with the words “as is” on my forehead and have steadfastly continued to sport the words throughout my 70 years:)
It seems like a much less stressful way to go about things.
YES. I love having friends who know you well enough to show up in magenta, polyester sweatpants and flip flops… oh, wait. You mean, metaphorical?? Oh dear. Well, now you know… I’ve actually done that. Yes, I try and be polite and maintain etiquette as much as possible but like you, I feel that it can be refreshing to just let go and ‘be’ at times. Luckily I can often do that at home and with my closest friends who in turn, act the same towards me. Being human is to be imperfect, sometimes unfiltered and occasionally rude. I am glad that you allow yourself to do that and ALSO that you have the insight to know when you’re doing it (as to be continually unfiltered is… uh, both socially awkward and obstructive to maintaining both work and personal relationships). Timing seems the key, my friend. I like this post!
“as to be continually unfiltered is… uh, both socially awkward and obstructive to maintaining both work and personal relationships”
Yeah… I would be lying if I said I didn’t know what you were talking about. 😉
Some mystery is a good thing in human relationships. That’s what I said on her blog yesterday. And I don’t think you aggravated Jen. She seems pretty unflappable to me. I admire her for living life the way she does.
Oh, no. Apologies! I didn’t mean I aggravated Jen. It was a friend and wife of a good friend here in the Fields.
Ohohoh. Forgive my lax brain. Three days to get everything done, but I’m still trying. 🙂
You made me immediately think of Tyler Perry’s Mr. Brown, who wears loud clothes and suspenders. You also made me think of yesterday, when my husband and I were at a bookstore, looking at magazines, and an older man in brown trousers stood about 10 feet from us, let loose a long, gurgling four-second fart, and then didn’t even have the sense to walk away. Just stood in that cloud, shameless. Now that’s as is. And P.S. I have no secrets.
I think I know why he wears brown trousers now!
P.S. – I dub thee the secretless one.
Let’s just keep that between you and me.