Do you ever wonder what would happen if we just went around and said exactly what we were thinking? I don't mean in that crazy call-up-the-president-and-tell-him-what-for kinda way. I just mean every day stuff. What would the world really be like? Would it be that much worse? I mean, sure, there has to be a bit of self-control when it comes to general civility. Don't go out of your way to tell the lady in Walmart that she really should reconsider her anti-bra stance. But you know, what about the lady behind you in line that has pushed her cart so far into your personal-space-bubble that it is currently pressing into your child's legs? By the way, this totally happened to me once. And you know what I did? Nothing. I said nothing. Because I didn't know WHAT to say.
"Um, excuse me, not sure if you noticed but your cart is leaving an indentation in my child's legs, so if you could just move back a little bit, that would be awesome." (I'm imagining that this would have little effect. After all, a person who has so little concern for their neighbor that they wouldn't go out of their way to avoid touching the child in the first place, probably doesn't at this point give a shit that they may be hurting said child).
"Uh, hi, yeah, not sure if you heard me, but your cart is pressing into my child's legs." (Edging myself in between her cart and my child's legs, which invariably causes her cart to be pushed back into her, which pisses her off).
"Oh, that hurt? Well how do you think my child feels? How about you show some common courtesy and pay attention to what you're doing?!" RAWR.
And see, even my imaginary epic telling-off finale isn't even that bitchy. God, I am too civilized.
I have fantasies where I just go around and say whatever I'm thinking, where that urge to suppress is completely gone. Perhaps I could blame it on a head trauma. I say that I totally would do it if it were my last day of work or something, some way that I would never have to see these people again. But who am I kidding? I couldn't even tell off the lady in Walmart and I've never seen her again. So what am I so scared of?
I've been told that I'm mean, that I have ice water running through my veins. But the truth is, I've noticed lately about myself that I go out of my way to avoid being uncomfortable. Which is to say, I go out of my way to avoid being truthful. If I don't like you, or don't care for what you're talking about, or am unhappy in a general situation, I don't do a damned thing. I force a smile, suppress my thoughts, and shove them deep down inside so that I can save them for when I get home and yell at my husband. You know, like any decent human being.
What I really want to do is say, hey old man, do you realize you tell that story every time I see you? Or how about, I know you're only asking what I did this weekend so that I can prompt you and you can launch into a story about that awesome thing your kid did, but I've got a bunch of stuff to do so let's not. Or how about just a simple, that's none of your business. God, that one would save me a lot of time, for sure.
I was watching Tabatha's Salon Makeover the other day and found myself envying her style. Not her all black, tinkerbell haircut thing she's got going on. But the way, from second one, you know exactly what's up. She doesn't sugarcoat or blow smoke or even excessively tear someone down. If you're awesome, she tells you. If you're not awesome, she tells you. And yeah, she may seem harsh at first. But ultimately the non-losers see that she is actually a pretty cool person. Meanwhile the idiots of the world just think she's mean and avoid her. Downside? Not really.
So this year for Christmas I am asking Santa to bring me a restored sense of confidence, an ability to assert myself, and to take the fear of confrontation and discord away. Yes it would be great if we could all just get along. But the fact is, there are a bunch of morons out there. And at the end of the day, as long as my husband and my kids still love me, those morons can go eff off.