Thursday, January 7, 2010

Paper or Plastic?

For those who may not know me well, there is something I feel I ought to clear up.
In my writing, and particularly my blog, I come off as sardonic, cold, and potentially, quite disturbed; this is the by-product of the creative center of my brain having been severely warped and twisted from years of theater, the internet, and growing up with Daniel and Laurel. However, while anyone who knows more of my writing than they do of me might conclude that I am also like that in every other area of my life, this is not the case. In fact, I possess one of the most painfully sensitive, profusely bleeding hearts that I have ever encountered. I say this for a couple reasons:
1) I care about EVERYTHING; seeing a dead animal on the side of the road pierces my heart to the core, as does seeing a homeless person wheeling their shopping cart along the street. For me, everything has feelings, so when mom and dad brush off my cats as "just a cat" I feel horrible, and beyond that, when I step on a stuffed animal on the floor, I have to apologize and put it up in the right place. I cannot handle being mean to anyone, and always aim to please. When I make somebody mad or upset, I feel pretty much like the worst person in the world, and I hate letting people down for any reason.
2) This phenomenon carries over to every reality, most pathetic of which is my video gaming. Now, I am not a gamer, but when I do occasionally game, my favorites are fantasy RPGs in which much of it is based on the choices I make. The best one I have ever encountered is Dragon Age, which I am currently playing, in which everything you say to any of the characters affects how the game goes and how they feel about you. I am quite aware that they are all computer generated and none of them actually have the feelings they simulate, but still, I cannot bring myself to be a jerk to ANYONE, even if they're already incredibly hostile towards me. I always choose the kindest, most cordial dialogue option, and only threaten or speak coldly if there is absolutely no other means to my end (and even then I do so reluctantly, with my conscience aching). This results in me listening to everyone's long boring stories, and adding several unnecessary hours to my game by completing pity quests for every random peasant who happens to have lost their puppy in the deep dark woods filled with GIANT SPIDERS! Also, if there the option to kill somebody or start a fight, I will exhaust every option to prevent this. If the conflict can be resolved by "just talking," it will be. This is stupid, because a large part of the game is based on the fighting aspect, and yet, I have weaseled out of so many fights and talked through so many conflicts that half the villains in the game have just skipped out on the promise that they'll be good and not try to kill me again (which of course, I usually trust that they'll do, even when it bites me later.) My inability to detach my heart from any decision makes me just about the worst gamer in the world.
3) I cannot say no. EVER. Just about anybody can guilt me into just about anything if they play their cards right, and they usually do. In just about any situation involving choice-making, a glare or a pout can cause me to completely bend to the will of whoever is giving the look. And, of course, if I make the wrong decision for that particular individual I feel terrible, so I invariably choose the option that person seems partial to. Doesn't take much to make me feel guilty.

Anyway, my point is that I have never EVER walked out of Macey's with a plastic bag. Paper bags suck, and are ridiculous to carry, but I can't get past the cashier's look of disapproval when I begin to say "plastic," and so instead I stumble out with an armful of giant paper bags obscuring my vision. And, of course, they ask me EVERY TIME which I'd rather have, so it's always on my head, and, from the look the baggers give me, I feel as though I'm actively clubbing baby seals if I even stop to consider plastic. I don't know why I care so much. I'm not an environmentalist in the least, and I really don't think plastic hurts anything that much, but I just can't handle the disapproval of the cashier who I will never see again. I mean, I don't want to be the one to cause anyone a negative emotion. That wouldn't be very nice of me.

Anyway, now that you know, you can pretty much use this information to sucker me into anything. Though, I'd prefer that you simply continued to be fooled by my seemingly cold and sarcastic tone. In fact, forget I ever said anything...

Unless, of course, you want to find scores of bludgeoned baby seals on your front porch.


MisssRobin said...

Please don't fool yourself into thinking you are the only woman to be a sucker for emotional manipulation. I think it's linked to estrogen or something (jk).

Some day you will realize that it is not your job to fix the world and that others grow by learning to deal with disappointment and do for themselves. And you will come to believe that you are worth taking care of and that it is your job to take care of yourself and no one else.

It may take time, but I believe in you.

Steph-a-Neph said...

THIS. THIS is the reason we are such good friends. I have this unnatural tendency to be able to sense a person's true nature...and I did right off the bat with you. I am the exact same way. We are more alike than we will admit in public, I'm sure. Dear heart, we are friends for a reason <3

The Erin said...

Yay! I'm glad you think so! As long as somebody doesn't mind that my heart bleeds all over everything, I'll know where my true friends are.