Well, that was a weird night. You’d have thought someone had looked inside my head and decided “Right. Enough with pontificating. Now you get the practical test.” A lot of the stuff that I’ve been pondering over the last month came up in all sorts of odd ways last night. The entire night felt faintly surreal.
Topic #1: Humans are scum.
So Stu, Andrea, Joseph and I are swapping relationship horror stories, because, y’know it seemed like a laugh at the time, and I come to the conclusion that I will never, ever understand how people can think that it’s normal or acceptable to treat other people like this. It really can’t be a minority of people who can see that there are just some things that you do not do, can it? I mean, I can’t imagine any of my friends pulling the kind of crap that we were talking about. What really chilled me about a couple of the stories is that these were people that had apparently seemed trustworthy.
I dunno how I’d handle it, were something like that to happen to me. I mean, I’ve had people treat me like shit, and like everyone else, I’ve had my heart broken. But I’ve never had someone I trusted stick the knife in and twist. I’ve had people I trusted do it to my friends and leave me to pick up the pieces, and that was shitty enough, thanks – even aside from what it did to the person they did it to, it left me wondering about how I could have trusted such a complete shitbag, and what the fuck was wrong with my judgement. And that was when I wasn’t the one with the sucking chest wound as a result.
I’ve been pondering the obligations that trust places on a person lately, because I’m taking yet another crack at writing that love story. On the one hand, it’s unreasonable to expect people to deny themselves in order to make another person happy. In a perfect world, it wouldn’t be, but sadly, we’re only human. On the other, if someone puts their trust in you, they’ve made themselves very vulnerable to you, and it’s incumbent upon you to do your damndest to make sure that they don’t get hurt as a result. If that means you don’t get everything you want out of life: tough. Life sucks, get a hat. Yeah, sometimes it really is inevitable – if you can get through life without hurting anyone, you’re very, very fucking lucky, or just simply not human. But you can do your best to minimise the hurt. You can put what you really want on pause for a while, in order to do what you have to do gently. Most importantly: you can have the courage to be honest and forthright. Make no assumptions about others, and don’t allow them to make them about you. Maybe you won’t always manage it, but you can give it your best shot. 100% achievement is not required
Isn’t it nice to be able to theorise like that, when you don’t have to shove it up against the harsh reality of the world? I have no idea how well I do in applying that sort of thing to my own life – I hope I do OK, but I’m always suspicious of someone that claims to be nice, or to not tell lies, or any of the other usual self-aggrandising “I’m a nice person, you can trust me” shit that people come up with in a relation to stuff like this. It smacks of both arrogance and self-deception. Anyway, enough on this subject. Humans can be thoughtless arseholes, and it’s really bad. We ought to try and do better. End.