Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Just Kidding

“You see that Hummer? That full sized Hummer with the hkymom license plate? She has our money. She’s got so much money that she is actually taking money away from us. She couldn’t even get upper case hkymom because somebody else already has it. So she settled for lower case because she is so desperate to make an unoriginal statement.

She thinks she’s better than us. Better than everybody else on this road. Did you see how she blew by us in the left hand lane? Didn’t even bother to look at us. To look down on us from the height of her precious and ostentatious vehicle.  She’s probably a princess too. Doesn’t appreciate what she has. How easy she’s got it.

She’s probably a wine snob who would walk into the liquor store and treat me like a servant. Barely talk to me as if everything about me is inferior to her and then make no comment as I humbly humped her case of expensive wine out to her goddamn Hummer.

 I would have to threaten her, to hold my box cutter up against her throat and tell her how valuable I am, how unique and interesting I am. Intimidate her to tears.

That’s the only way to deal with a woman like that. I hate her.”

My wife is often surprised by fantasy rants like these. Maybe a little tired of them as well.  She is also amused and entertained. They often result in a smile or a laugh accompanied of course by the prerequisite head shaking.

She hears them all the time. It’s how I entertain myself. It’s how I reveal and distort my true self at the same time, mixing opinion and impression with fantasy, anger and hyperbole.

I suppose some people would consider this form of expression to be unhealthy. “Wow, you have a lot of anger in you. Ever consider seeing a psychiatrist?”

These people are misguided. What is healthier? Talking about putting a box cutter up against her throat or actually holding a box cutter up against her throat?

At work after enduring another customer I’ll turn to Eric and say “Who the hell are these people? Who do they think they are? Talking to me. They don’t have the right to talk to me. They should keep their mouths shut, hand over the money and walk out silently with their precious booze tucked under their arms. Go home to their jaded spouses and eat Spam Burgers until a myocardial infarction sweeps in and makes the world a more tolerable place.”

Eric’s eyes will usually glaze over, he’ll hold out his hands and say “Take it easy, take it easy. You gonna be all right?” Then he’ll walk away and find something else to do in a safer place in the store.

Even though I am just kidding.

I am a people person. I really am. We are all in this together. As unique as each of our lives is, we all share a lot of common struggles and confusions and disappointments and pain. It’s just that some people are not smart enough to understand this.  They pretend, they deny, they mislead, they create a lot of unnecessary turbulence.

It gets in my way.

The Beatles sang about love a lot, universal love and how it could save the world. I bought that message, believed in it, still believe in it. We need to give each other space and understanding, we need to fan the flames of empathy and be gentler with one another.

We would have a lot less stress in our lives with a lot more empathy. And really all you have to do is remember that the person you are dealing with is just another human being.

I don’t see enough of that. It drives me crazy. Sometimes I want to slap these people. Tie them up, throw them in the back of my truck and drive them out to Lake Winnipesaukee. Pilot a row boat out to the dock and drag their body up onto the splintered wood. Dangle their head over the water in the middle of March. Say to them “Are you going to be nice? Are you going to treat people with respect? Or am I going to have to kick you into the lake and make the world a more tolerable place?”

I’m just kidding.


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