Today’s Pre-Caffeinated Wisdom:
It’s amazing how people can take offense at inoffensive comments. It also never amazes me how some people can twist anything said by anybody into a personal insult. I once, in the not to distant past, made a comment regarding my own personal dedication to a specific cause. Another person who overheard this comment, decided it was an attack on them for not doing as I did, and nursed a grudge for several months, completely unbeknownst to me.

Later, I made a string of my usual sharing of photos with sarcastic comments and sayings that I found humorous at the time. I have a policy regarding insults and attacks: ‘If I’m trying to offend you, there will be no doubt whatsoever. I will make it clear and obvious that you are the direct target.’ I have informed people of this policy, and tbh, I’m generally not one to hold a grudge or outright attack someone. If I have a problem with someone, I generally sit back and wait for karma to run it’s course. If karma isn’t working fast enough, I will approach this person.

Case in point. A long time friend of mine was getting under my skin in a big way, because I didn’t feel he was living up to his commitments. I finally had enough, and approached him. Before I was even able to air my complaints, he started a discussion about things he had been involved in, which made it clear that he was in fact doing a great job, and for reasons I didn’t previously understand, I simply hadn’t been able to see it. Problem solved, no harsh words, no bad blood, and my dear friend was once again my dear friend. Issues, especially between friends, are often the result of lack of communication or understanding, and can easily be cleared up with a few words. Sometimes those words don’t even need to be about the problem in question, and you realize that the true problem was your own misconceptions and/or ignorance of the situation.

I admit that I do not think like most people do. Much like the picture I posted a while back about how people in cars travel in a straight line between point ‘a’ and point ‘b’, while bikers travel in a giant squiggle, I tend to not think in straight lines. Most people think inside the box. I completely ignore the box and my thoughts bounce all over the place. That’s actually one of the reasons I’ve started this daily diatribe, and even set up my own blog site. It gives me the opportunity to lay out my thoughts and analyze them in a more linear format than the tangled ball of yarn that my line of thinking so closely resembles. That said, back to the point. Someone pointed out to me that someone else would take my string of usual sarcastic posts as a personal affront, despite the fact that I had made my policy clear. So I made a post much to that effect, stating that if it was aimed at you personally, then I would have named you personally. I also do not like having personal battles in a public forum. For one, it’s personal and none of the rest of the world’s business. For two, when you argue on the internet, regardless of your stance, righteousness, or even if you manage to win the argument, everyone involved comes out looking like an idiot. Of course, I got a deluge of responses from people who HAD taken it personally, in response to my statement that it was not such.

Sadly, I will probably come under fire for citing these examples, but to be very clear: I am using them as examples only, not digging up the past or trying to reignite fires that have already died down. My inspiration for this topic today, actually comes from the vid I shared a few moments ago regarding censorship on a college campus. Still, I will probably get comments, msgs or txts criticizing me, which will actually prove my point, which is that no matter what you say or how you explain it, people will find a way to twist it and make it about them.

As I often say, if this post has your blood pressure rising, and you are already preparing your retaliation, then you need to take a moment and figure out why. I’ll go ahead and ad to that by saying this: If you (and when I say you, I don’t have anyone in specific in mind,) do feel the need to retaliate and defend yourself, then you are an idiot. I won’t be insulting you, you will be insulting yourself, because I have gone out of my way to state THIS IS NOT ABOUT YOU. This is about me and my thoughts. If my thoughts offend you, too bad. They are my thoughts. I post them for two reasons: As I said earlier, to line them out for myself, and second, so that others might glean a bit of understanding, whether about me, other people, or the world in general. Also, hopefully, to get a chuckle or two.

TBH, the people I pick on are the people I like. Generally if you have managed to annoy me or worse, I will simply ignore your existence. The most powerful retaliation to an attack is blissful ignorance. One person that I’ve had the most violent arguments with often accused me of being an ‘emotional black hole.’ I actually like this description, because when some starts an argument, picks a fight, or outright insults you, they have a primal need to evoke a response from you. Total lack of reaction, or even worse, taking it as a compliment, is infuriating and makes your attacker feel powerless, which is one of the hardest feelings to cope with.

So take this with you today: If I’m insulting you, I probably like you. If something I say offends you, but I didn’t single you out, then your conscience is probably pulling your strings and belittling you, which is an indication of your own issues, not my words. Most importantly, try to learn to recognize jokes and sarcasm. Learn to laugh and take things in stride. Don’t let other people control your emotions and reactions with their own opinions. When you fail to do this, you put yourselves under their control. Think for yourself. Until you can learn to hold your head up and respect yourself, don’t expect anyone to do it for you.

The truly sad part of all of this, is that the ones that this philosophy could help the most will never understand it. I hold no angst toward people like that, only pity. Don’t be a fool to be pitied.