Princes, Paupers, and Players

Some of us common folk are always being berated for what we look like. The eccentric nature that we who are just outside the circle of the normal forces us into splash-zone seats at public hangings.

The way we dress, act, and talk does not match up with the structured typicalities of society. For those of us who belong to a “family” bigger than just their own person, it is an embarrassment when this difference is displayed for others to see. The haughty conformists’ greatest fear is that those they feel they need to control may go rogue, sometimes defeating even the lowest expectations and setting a new standard for the rock bottom of near insanity.

The confusion and condescension of self-proclaimed elite creates a smoke screen that blinds them. We were given one face, but we are demanded to make ourselves another.

But the outliers don’t want to be the paupers who scramble to convince the world that they are princes. They don’t want to be the princes who attempt to create an illusion of modesty when so often there is no higher hubris than their own. They are the players that do not make legitimized contenders. They observe. They find odd ways to make their marks in history, and interestingly enough, it is more often that one of them gains true recognition in a world that once saw them as unacceptably outlandish. It may sometimes be negative recognition, but it is recognition all the same.

Better to be a dark mark on a permanent record than fall into dull shades of gray. I have never known anyone who marches to the beat of their own drum to step back in line for perfect harmony.

Unless they are afraid.

And unfortunately, that fear isn’t rare.

Sometimes, they are an ear and a pen, and that’s all there is. There isn’t any more.

Madeline.

Ace Ventura: Beard Detective

Is it terrible to make someone your beard without telling them? Is there any situation in which it isn’t totally unethical to basically use someone to protect yourself?

I’m dating someone I don’t want to date to keep my parents off my back about getting married and protect myself from being exposed as a flaming asexual. The Ace gene can’t be spilled to an Arab family.

That’s therapy. Immediately.

Well, full disclosure, I’m technically engaged to him, and he has no clue that I have no interest in marrying him or that he’s just a beard. He thinks he’s in a hopeless love story, and I want him the way he wants me.

I know how awful it sounds, but aren’t there exceptions? I mean this guy isn’t exactly great. He’s basically thousand dollars in debt and just keeps taking out more loans to pay back those loans and then doesn’t pay those back either. He’s taken money from me and my father and hasn’t returned it. He has a job, but doesn’t go. He’s stubborn, a loose cannon, and immature. And also, my friends hate him.

I would feel horrible making anyone else a beard.

Him, not so much.

Is that so wrong?

An Anti-Abortion Augury

I am not an activist. I do not rally for anything. I do not push my beliefs on others to control how they act. I do not care about what other people do, especially if I don’t play a part in the outcome. This is not a post about the rightness or wrongness of aborting what isn’t yet a child.

I now recognize that, that statement may convey my actual feelings on the subject, but I’ll move on.

I’m writing this because I simply don’t see why people get so heated about abortion. If you aren’t having the child, why do you care so much about what happens to it? I realize that this sounds insensitive and cruel, but the reality of the situation is, if you are not someone who was personally included in the seed-planting portion of this union, you don’t really have the right to dictate the results. You’re not the one who was throwing free throws and scored.

Some people see it as murder. I get it. Who has the right to take any life? Maybe no one.

I just don’t understand why men get so broken up about it. I mean, if you had a one-night stand, odds are you don’t really care about the person you just soiled with your surprisingly skilled swimmers. It was just companionship, and you were about to face a punishment you probably weren’t ready for.

Bonus points if you’re already dating someone else.

You want to make yourself unhappy just because you believe that keeping an unwanted child is “the right thing to do.” That doesn’t make sense. A woman just gave you an out. You can now walk away, childless and void of responsibility, and be with whoever you want.

I guess what I’m saying is, if she’s going the abortion route, run off and have your fairy tale life and stop trying to make everyone unhappy with your sad-sack beliefs.

I’m not saying abortion is good. I’m just saying that when you get a do-over, don’t be a little bitch about it. Not everyone gets that. Go and live your life the way you were going to live it before. Be happy with the shot you got, and don’t dwell. The kid is gone, now. You can’t get it back.

 

I clearly have no morals.

Empathetic Evisceration: For the Greater Good

I really have to call into question the whether there are levels of empathy. Can you be both empathetic and not empathic at the same time?

Allow me to give some context. I have a close friend who was recently dumped by her boyfriend of five months. I dislike this man for multiple, some would say very valid, reasons. So when I discovered that he had broken up with her, I felt somewhat…happy, elated, severely satisfied.

Basically, I was dancing with jazz hands in my head.

And I don’t feel like that makes me a bad friend. I think it makes me a good friend, that I was reveling in her pain.

Not her in pain. The cause of her pain.

And that brings me to my point: is it possible to be sincerely empathetic while also feeling satisfaction about the thing that created a person’s distress? Is that comparable to, let’s say, being happy that someone is sick because it kept them from doing something that would get them hurt?

Or are both of those things horrible and retroactively irrelevant because the “greater good” is an inconsiderate concept with the faintest taste of self-serving malice?

Is feeling no satisfaction in either side of a symbiotically complicated equation the only way to have an emotional reaction that isn’t morally bankrupt? Is lying about it to create a kind of pseudo-empathy to avoid out-kicking your coverage worse, or does honesty still go a long way, here?

Incidentally, I think honesty is very rarely the best policy, but that’s a whole other discussion.

Also, thinking about marriage at nineteen is insane.

I think I have the moral high ground, here.

I may not be very good at this friendship thing.