Thursday, April 18, 2013

Interesting Dirtbags

Two weeks ago I was happily gabbing with Bug at work about, I dunno, macaroons or Lindy West or I DUNNO when a coworker who doesn't usually stop by the reception desk paused gravely in front of us and asked, "Did you hear about what happened?"

It's an off-setting question, but what was really off-setting is that this coworker wore a frown but was holding onto this, like, excitement. And she nodded her head slowly and told us about some kid in Texas who attacked his classmates with a box-cutter that day. "Oh," we said, "oh." And that was kinda all there was to say. I mean, great. Thanks for that? Coworker stood nodding a few more moments, added something like, "Just goes to show..." And then it was semi-evident to me, she didn't actually know what went to show where, but she had thrown out some introductory phrase, so she wrapped it up with, "...gotta be aware of your surroundings." And she shuffled away. And me and Bug, we nodded seriously because we're not monsters nor idiots and that's what you're supposed to do when a kid from Texas goes berserk with a packaging accouterment.

WHY DID THIS HAVE TO HAPPEN? WHY WAS IT SO IMPORTANT WE HAD TO BE TOLD? WHAT DID THAT ACCOMPLISH?

These are the things I asked Muffy today in the Arizona sun while we walked around my campus sipping Jamba Juice. Incidentally, Muffy is next to me watching me type this blog. She had some answers:

"Let me sum it up really quick--Don't write any of this. One is--[she notices me transcribing] This isn't gonna make any sense [laughter]. Okay drama. Um, what was the other thing? No. Okay, don't...[she gets frustrated with me typing her words, but I do not stop]. So, um, wait what was the other thing? Drama and, oh yeah! Power! They want importance, significance. They want to be somebody significant to the other person. You mentioned they wanted to be remembered with that event. Like, in connection to that event. Oh yeah, and then the last thing is that some people feel boring and they get excited when there's something exciting to share because they want to be seen as exciting."

That said, we went on to discuss how being boring and thinking others are boring is not only boring,  it's perpetuating tragedy! Because the more we get jazzed to discuss misfortune, the more troubled folk idealize that attention, and we totally play into it because it's not boring.

Solutions:
A. Recognize that the most exciting things are not tragedy. The most exciting thing is Love. That is not boring. We do not have to wait to be intrigued by disaster.
B. Work toward seeing others as interesting. Let go of the misconception that we ourselves or others are boring. "Imagine if you approached every person and treated them as if they're interesting. I bet people wouldn't end up...doing those things. If you're getting that sort of love..."
C. Continue attempting to find tactful ways to divert conversations surrounding tragedy. Not that it's always unproductive. "Sometimes it is productive, like with the gun control [post Sandy Hook], but the conversation should be productive or it should just stop."
Muffy sippin' Jamba
She doesn't know who I am and
she doesn't give a damn about me.
'Cause I'm just a teenage dirtbag, baby.

1 comment:

Eric Dern said...

"Strength to love."