Sunday, October 10, 2004

Mongerers and Emotional Predators

It's funny how people foster such immense gratification from the empowerment associated with having a juicy bit of gossip, and keeping a circle of ravenous subscribers at bay, begging like a puppy for a morsel of dirt. Holding a potentially destructive nugget of news carries the scepter of superiority for those who have little else to brandish. Weaknesses and zest for temporary empowerment, in the souls of the weak, historically outweigh the implicit trust and morally scrupulous aspects of maintaining confidence with private information or news. It's the intangible difference between having a bran muffin and having a fat sugar coated donut. Temptation versus discretion. Despite the notion that the majority of us carry these values with the best of intentions, it merely takes a moment of indiscretion or another person's mindless bellowing to create gossip's subsequent avalanche of confusion, anxiety, and abandonment of trust. A few truly bad apples refuse to embrace any doctrine of communicative restraint, and pathologically harbor no guilt for breaking confidences or compromising predetermined tenets of trust within contexts of close friendships and privileged information.

People who assume too often, and in doing so, tend to assume the worst, either are too lazy to investigate, or couch a philosophy of negativity, and need to project that dank stench of acrimony toward everyone else's perceptions. It's a huge powder keg when a presumptuous, pessimistic person casts their predetermined doubts into reality and suffocate others with their haphazard conclusions. Invariably the innocent victim must jump to his/her own defense, convince the doubter of their erroneous ways, and shadow‑box against a phantom of neuroses and skewed recriminations. A type of cycle builds, as the presumptuous Doubting Doogie ends up excluded from otherwise rational cliques, and upon realization of being isolated, fulfills his prophecies of pessimism that either people don't like him or people are embittered and difficult to associate with. In a quorum of one, a doubtful, bitter, irrational person is the majority voter, and once alone, the homespun conclusions build with impunity. Worse, that person is usually lactose intolerant. If so, enjoy it ‑ when else can you use a fresh stick of butter as a weapon of gastric suction?

I hate hearing and saying the word "friend" about as much as I hate hearing the word "feelings". It's such a throw away word, exploited far beyond comparison. I love when people rhetorically spout "what are friends for?" so I can volley my "who knows" right back into their stinky little tennis shorts. In my usually doubtful frame of mind, it's surprisingly difficult to pare all the people from my circle and decide who are the ones who legitimately have concern for my well‑being, enjoy my company with no ulterior motives, and strive to keep the ledger of favors and obligations reasonably balanced. Being neither an angel nor someone qualified to wipe the ass of an angel, I realize that the burden of sincere friendship does not need to fall outside of my own boundaries, but after dealing with enough parasites and jerks over time, those boundaries fade in places.
Where boundaries are lacking, interpersonal functionality takes over. It's easy to fire dank questions over the forest of vagueness and think "Why do I desire this person's company?" For me, most people just enjoy the silliness I can provide, much like hiring one of those foul smelling clowns to entertain at a birthday party. They perform a job, fill a role, and when finished, head back home to prepare for the evening's rituals of porn and self‑mutilation. I don't mind necessarily having a particular type of enticing feature, such as designated court jester or mood lifter. But when taking careful inventory of those that surround us, it's usually but a handful of kind souls that have legitimate interests and concerns for our well being. And further yet ‑ why should anyone have an overwhelming concern and zest for our happiness? Aren't we all about looking out for number one? Nobody should be ashamed about pursuing their own interests and potentially fostering selfish motives. We aren't groomed that way, and most of the sacrificial types are either in mental institutions, monasteries, or both. Those are the ones that chose to decline purchasing the extra body armor and risk traversing the streets with their meager vulnerable skin as sole insulation against parasites, thieves, and emotional time bombs.

While it's amusingly easy to fall into the wrong circles, and suddenly realize that one is immersed in negative or dangerous folks, it can be amusingly difficult to realize the hazardous environment and deal with the confrontational backlash of severing the ties with these entities.
Those that tap complacent individuals for ego fuel are always aware that the "victim" will avoid stirring the pot, and allow things to continue indefinitely. For such types, a lifetime of slow burn is better than a short period of hot flash ‑ deal with the selfish individual, rather than risk conflict and stress with confrontation and a standoff. Any time I see a person in any type of friendship capitalize on another person's vulnerabilities, it irritates me in realizing that this faux exploitation and gross imbalance is bound to have a ripple effect, and burden other people in the support system.
In a larger sense, it's obvious that imbalance is the most effective antagonist against precariously forged partnerships, pairings, and similar relationships. The aforementioned tendencies toward one's exploitation of another's inconsistencies is a direct consequence of preconceived imbalance ‑ and those who seek imbalances in planting the seed of "love" with another are the ones to avoid. To pull this prosaic tractor of a litany full circle, it's the seekers of people's foibles and blemishes who also disperse exaggerated tales, rumors, and inevitably harmful and libelous nuggets of observation. A harmful, gossip mongering individual will observe two people talking, and once processed through that person's feces‑laden microbrain, a newly embellished tale pops out of the rear like a hot batch of yesterday's corn. A day later, enough people will have heard that a person is being unfaithful to his girl, or similar tawdry endeavors are afoot. Nothing good can come out of a nefarious mind but an entanglement of allegations.