Keep it simple, silly

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The pedestal on Rumor Mill Rd

There is a run-down old mill on this road, sinking slowly into the stream that trickles by it, lapping its doors at floodtime. The mill has two guardians: two brothers who share the same name as the mill. Every day they walk up and down the road, passing by it regularly. Some people around here think they’re a little crazy, but there’s nothing like a stroll to while away a day. They are my teachers.

My teachers come in as many forms as I witness crossing my path. Every one of them teaches me something of the spectrum of sanity. I have one dear friend, for example, who put me on a pedestal when I first entered E’s life, calling me a hero in admiring tones. Unfortunately, the ground here is wet and soft, so pedestals don’t tend to stay upright for long. When I first met this friend of mine, she left the door open to topple this pedestal, and I have been so kind as to give her the tools to do it.

I can’t tell you how grateful I am for the push. A pedestal is an uncomfortable place to sit, and the perspective is hardly flattering either, what with her looking up my nostrils and all.

Now we’re back on the same level, which you might imagine would be ideal. And in many ways it is. The only thing though, is that when someone puts another on a pedestal, it is usually because they think they need somebody to look up to, and this is a fairly solid indication that they don’t think too much of themselves. So now here I find myself eye-to-eye with someone experiencing a good deal of self-contempt. Instead of nasal hairs, now she sees herself, and that’s pretty tough on the poor girl.

This is where the rumours start. If I feel bad about myself, I could easily succumb to the insane logic that making someone else look worse will make me look good. The problem with this thinking, of course, is that I would only be attacking myself: it’s me I’m seeing in you, so by attempting to make you look bad, I’m actually making me look bad. If this doesn’t make sense, consider that everything is wave motion and a wave is the representation of a circle: it’s all circular. Another word for this is ‘karma’, but that term has earned itself so many misconceptions these days that it’s probably best not to use it in this context. Let’s just stick with ‘circular.’

So yes, my dear friend, in doing her best, has started a chain of rumours that has no option but to turn around and bite her on the butt. I would so love to share this with her, to give her the opportunity to stop the cycle before it gets out of hand, and it is clear that is not my place right now.

And none of this matters. What matters to me is that there is someone in my life who has enough concern to remind me in every way she can where my work still lies. What matters to me is that I know I have someone to count on.

This is my thank you note to you, sweet friend. Thank you for sharing. After all, to give is to have, and you have given me plenty. Just think, all of it is yours!


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