Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Feelings

I would like to think that I can write anything that expresses how I feel, because after all, it is my blog, and one of its stated purposes is to facilitate the observance of me writhing and wriggling like a worm on a hook.

Fact is, that since this isn't my own private journal, and since people to whom I refer0 (and people who know them) read this blog, I have a responsibility to be fair to the people I write about, since they are no longer merely vehicles through which I express myself, but people with feelings, and I am not their Judge.

With that in mind, I see the need for some analysis and clarification of previous posts. Warning: If you fear this won't interest or amuse you, please stop reading.

*clears throat*

Poindexter

I would first like to point out that when writing this entry, I thought that I had done everything short of writing it in bold faced caps across the top of the page to indicate that I was dumping a stream of raw consciousness onto the page. I started off by enumerating the awfulnesses of the day, then lapsed into a breif period of analysis without which the title would have made no sense. Next were two short paragraphs which explicitly describe feelings (and remember, I'm a guy, so "feelings" does not automatically translate to "my opinion"), and finally at the end I attempt to assure the reader that I am in fact still sane, and at least capable of looking positively at the situation, despite its apparent lack of expression in the rest of the post.

Sounds innocent enough! What was so offensive to your readers? Well let's see...
"I don't think I'm showing off, but I get the feeling that's how a lot of people perceive my attempts to relate. In return, I get pity gestures, but no real attempt at a meaningful rapport."
This was read by some as an accusation. I didn't see it that way, and I still don't. I was stating a fact: a fact which I had just in part attributed to a quirk of my own personality.

"It feels like I'm that kid who tries to act like a grown-up, and bosses all the other kids around..., only in the spiritual sense. What am I supposed to do though? Stunt my own growth so as to fit in?"
This one is just begging to be misunderstood, and I knew that when I wrote it, which is why I attempted to narrow down my meaning to the specific sense in which I meant it. Notice that I did not say "I feel like..." as if the situation were directly analogous to the one being described. Here is the piece of semantic gymnastics that I was attempting to elegantly portray: I feel like everyone else thinks that I am an arrogant spiritual show-off, even though I know that (1) this is not actually how they see me (2) I do not in fact think myself to be spiritually superior, rather I know that many of them have true depth. Moreover (3) despite the fact that I can see glimpses of this depth, barriers exist which prevent me from connecting with them through it on an on-going basis. *Whew*
"This last conference felt, in some ways, like getting a big box in the mail, only to find after hours of rummaging that it only contains packing peanuts."
Perhaps in a more precise analogy the box would contain something, but I would still be unable to find it. However, both of these situations feel exactly the same to the recipient of the box, and that was my true subject. Again, if you think I'm saying that the YP are devoid of content, you are misinterpreting me.

Abduction

In this entry, I explain how I am God's favorite, "and I, even I only, am left," and having been brought through the fiery trial, He leadeth me on to greener pastures as a reward for my faithfulness.

I mean seriously, how arrogant and self-righteous do you think I am?1

That said, I do feel lonely, I have repeatedly expressed my frustration with my inability to connect with the YP, and I experienced neither of these in RFH's group.

Nevertheless, the description given is not a direct contrast to the YP (unless you think I'm suggesting that the YP are stoic--the distinction was noted because in general I see fear of seriousness because 'seriousness isn't fun'), but rather a description of why I liked it: many of the same things could be said of the monthly Saturday morning Bible studies, which I also consider to be a blessing from God and a refuge. This was a bonus one, unasked-for and unexpected, which I half2-jokingly suggested was because God had read my blog and thought I needed it. I certainly had been pouting loudly enough for him to have gotten that idea.

The message I got: "Tim, be patient. I know your frustration and I am in control." which certainly felt like a big hug.

/rant



0 And apparently also, those who suspect they are being referred to

1 Oh, I welcome your comments on this one.

2 No more, no less.

2 comments:

  1. Heeeeeey! "I'm a guy, so "feelings" does not automatically translate to "my opinion"" So are you saying that GIRLS... no, no... I'm kidding! =)
    The following is my opini feeling.
    Thank you for going to such efforts to be understood. That is very considerate of you. Please please please don't stop (or slow down) blogging because a few people misinterpret what you say.

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  2. Tim, did you know that the word "poindexter" means "a person who is intelligent but socially inept; a nerd"? And that its etymology is derived "either from 'Felix the Cat' or 'Revenge of the Nerds'"?

    Thanks to Dictionary.com, now I know!

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