What would the world be like if everyone said exactly what was on their minds all the time, if the internal censors disappeared? If we stopped filtering out the uncharitabe thoughts and blurted it all out without a care? If we throw caution to the winds and went around calling people the names we’ve always longed to instead of pretending they don’t get on our nerves when they so do? I’m reminded of a poem we had in 12th, Once upon a time by a Gabriel Okara, about people wearing masks all the time, saying things they don’t mean and pretending to be nice simply because society expects it of them. But yes, what if it werent so? Sounds good? I dunno. Agreed, it would be a huge relief not to have to plaster phony smiles on our faces, and act pleased to meet people we wish lived light years away. And how liberating it would be to give some prize jerks the much-talked-about piece of our minds, and be done with it.
But that’s precisely the point – would we be done with it? The world would then be a much more open and honest place, certainly, but more unpleasant too, surely? Because it’s just not possible to do away with less-than-perfect interactions and exchanges. Like it or not, we will continue to have to live with playground bullies, know-it-all classmates, annoying team-mates, nosy relatives, grouchy colleagues, unsympathetic bosses. That being the case, which is better – open hostility or fake pleasantry?
I’m not trying to sell an opinion here – heck, I don’t even really have one. All I know is, I’m quite a many-faced person myself (yech, that sounds truly horrible, like I’m some mythical monster and a big hypocrite as well). Honestly, it’s not a trait of mine I’m too crazy about. People have such diverse, even contrasting opinions about me, that sometimes make me wonder just what I really am like.
Maybe we’re just programmed to come up with reassuring answers to disconcerting questions about ourselves, or maybe it’s just me, but I’ve temporarily managed to keep the nagging doubts at bay. Same system, different input --> different output, right? So same situation, new person would still classify as a new situation, wouldn’t it? Little wonder, then, that I react differently to different people, that they carry different impressions about me.
As for the real me, that’s still a tough one. I wonder if I’ll ever be able to answer that. Maybe Staind had it right, and inside we’re all just the same, ugly.
I realise I’ve digressed quite a bit, and that no real conclusions have been drawn, but who cares. This is not Section B.
It’s okay, after all. I’m okay, you’re okay, we’re all okay. (repeat)