Wednesday, July 28, 2010

confessions of a weirdo

Yesterday, Austin the Actor and I met with the sound guy for his upcoming film and then did some last-minute location scouting. When we were done we went back to Austin's place and when he sat down and started playing a video game it hit me: I do not play video games. I mean I have, but that was a long time ago and only for a little while. After this thought sunk in, I started to think about the other things that most everybody in this culture does for fun and I realized, I don't do any of those things. I am really, really weird. For example...

I do not watch professional sports - not at all, not ever. I am pretty much done with snowboarding, wakeboarding, or any other sport that requires me to set a whole lot of fossil fuel on fire.  I do not enjoy talking about cars, or any other sort of machines. I have a motorcycle, but it is the most boring, wussy motorcycle you can buy and I ride it primarily for fuel economy. I am not into guns, or shopping malls, or fashion. Although I really like movies and sometimes watch TV on my computer, I do not actually own a television and that doesn't bother me one bit. Nor does it bother me that I do not own a cell phone or a credit card.

I do not smoke cigarettes, nor do I smoke drugs. In fact, I have never put any form of mind-altering drugs into my body (except prescription painkillers, and I always quit taking them before I'm supposed to). Although I will happily overindulge on home-baked sweets, I have very little sugar in my diet. I eat almost no comfort or junk food and generally make a lot of my food myself, at home. I can't remember the last time I drank a soda.

Although I tend to think about sex more than I feel is particularly healthy, I don't have sex with women. Or men. I do not enjoy parties with lots of people, and likewise do not enjoy bars. I do not generally like group dances, so I almost never go. I do not drink any alcohol - in fact, you could probably fit all the alcohol I've ever sipped in a shot glass.

I am not a member of any clubs, societies or cults. I am not affiliated with any major institutions of any kind, or any political party. I have no magazine subscriptions. I have never been in a fist fight, and in fact do my best to avoid angry arguments.

In short, I am a very, very boring person.

No wonder I feel lonely sometimes. No wonder I feel isolated, and walk around wondering why anyone would ever love me.

They do, though. They do - and not just the people who have a blood-reason for it. One of those non-blood lovers-of-me (JJ) suggested recently that I ought to write a list of things I love about myself, so I will remember to love myself; and a list of things I don't love about myself, so I'll remember what I am trying to change. I squished my finger today while working on my motorcycle and it is pulsating pain up my arm to my forehead, so I am not going to do the latter and make this painful funk I'm in worse with a public airing of the things I don't love about myself.

Instead, I think I will cheer myself up by listing the things about myself that I do love. Since we've already determined that I am a boring person, I might as well admit right up front that I love that I enjoy scrabble and chess, and am pretty decent at both of them. I think I have a fairly handsome, symmetrical, acne-free face - and as shallow as it is to admit, I love that about myself.

I love that I am a good father to my son. I love how I almost always catch myself before losing my temper with him, so that he knows me as a very gentle, attentive person. I love that I get to watch him discover life.

I love that I have weird, random skills picked up from my weird, random life - skills that are not particularly useful day-to-day: like tossing a hand net, climbing a tree, driving an oversized truck at high speeds through mud, tying cardboard boxes onto a four-wheeler, or capping the exhaust system for a high-end natural gas fireplace. I love walking around knowing that if someone was ever like, "Oh, my gosh! Is there a guy handy with an angle grinder in the house!?!" I would be able to jump right in.

I love that I am creative and  get to make stuff that bears my mark and connects with other people. I love that I am a good writer and painter, and that I have written and painted things that have had deep, personal significance to friends and strangers. I love my singing voice, and I love that I have finally begun to get over my fear and am learning to play a musical instrument.  I love that my creativity has allowed me to know and befriend an inordinate number of people whom I consider to be creative geniuses. I love that I, personally, bear the mark of a Creative Genius beyond my capacity to understand. I love that I don't have to understand it to enjoy it. I love that I am comfortable with silence. I also love that I am comfortable being alone, and that I have a rich inner life.

I love that I find intense pleasure in simple things - smells, sights, sounds... cleaning a toilet - and that I am surrounded by a natural world that perpetually blows my mind. I love that I can appreciate beauty, and that there is so much beauty to appreciate. I love the whole world, and all its sights and sounds. Boom-dee-ya-da!

 I love that my friends can count on me to fill any need of theirs that I am able to fill, and that some of them ask me to do ridiculous favors for them because they know I'll say yes. I love that my friends can trust me with their darkest secrets, knowing that I will keep them secret and listen without judgement. I love that I learned to be hospitable from my parents, and that I take great pleasure in serving other people.
You know what? I may be weird and boring... but that just worked. How could anybody feel lonely, surrounded by all that love?

Do me a favor, will ya? Write your own list. Put it in the comments, even. I would love to hear about it. Even if you don't want to make it public, though, you should still write a list. It will be worth it. You're amazing! When was the last time you noticed?

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