Monday, May 2, 2011
It's just like high school, or is it?
A woman said to me today, "This is ridiculous, isn't it? It's just like high school."
I laughed, and wondered what she'd been like in high school and if she realized even speaking to me about the issue made her seem the most immature of all the involved parties.
For many women, high school was a horrible experience that they would never choose to re-live-- as seen on a recent Glee episode, where the OCD Ginger chick felt ostracized, the powerful bitch wanted even more power and the fame hungry talented girl just wanted her recognition.
Reality check. That's not just a high school mentality. That's corporate world positioning. That's teachers vying for tenure. That's a political fight between Democrats and Republicans. That was me trying to make a point a few weeks ago in a room of print happy writers.
And strangely, that's probably the same thing this broad has to deal with on her job with men and women all day long.
To tell me I can't mention the people in the story by name- ever... is fun. Really thanks for the story idea. To say something is high-schoolish is to say it won't matter in another four years... but doesn't EVERYTHING matter?
Every time we hurt someone's feelings, every time we act out of impulse or anger, every time we made a bad decision about a friendship or a lover, every time we lie. These decisions - made as a high school aged person, or an adult will not only matter in the here and now- but in the future.
Of course, in the moment, I listened. (while taking notes - call it character study for the novel). I tried to tell the woman that I was sorry she'd felt it necessary to waste her time and mine, that if she would take the time to read through the lines, ask the right questions and actually make a committed decision, she could have laid the problem to rest long ago.
When she'd let me, I told her the truth, I inserted my opinion, and mostly I chuckled to myself, that A. she didn't want to hear any other sides of a story, except the one she was choosing to believe and that B. some ass- backward uneducated people in the world feel like it's their right to abuse authority, in any shape or form.
Don't you hate the guy who drives up in the Mercedes to collect the free turkey at Thanksgiving, the woman who sues for the hot coffee she spilled on her lap at the fast food drive-thru. Don't you despise corruption at any level and those people who imagine they are above it all?
Mostly, I guess I am disappointed in mankind. That the idea of freedom of expression, of personal communication and private interaction and even, a good old-fashioned tossing down of the gauntlet in the most polite way ever to say,"Oh yeah. Bring it!" has been pushed to the wayside in favor of some dumb-assed sophomoric life approach wherein one feels abdicated by saying "you tell him that she told her that I said that to them and now, I don't want to talk about it any more, so it's over."
All that says to us, the wiser ones is .....you're a fucking moron.