Embarrassing Inconsistencies

Text of document just discovered on the hard drive, retrieved from something I wrote in February of 2006 and italicized accordingly:

One of the more mortifying parts of the overlap between childhood and adultship is the gradual realization that, while you are indeed getting an increasingly good handle on Just Who You Are, this understanding has been a long time coming, and the years leading up to it have definitely been filled with awkward, schizophrenic shifts between confidence and mumbling, dancing and wall-hugging, flirting and fleeing from people and places and situations.

You then realize what a wonder it is that you've been able to establish any kind of identity and all, and *then* you realize, finally, that many of the people around you - friends, family, coworkers - could not possibly have overlooked these embarrassing inconsistencies, but never said anything.

Then it's almost unbearably humiliating to piece together the ultimate shame: all these folks who watched you stumble through interaction after interaction, meeting after meeting, aren't just some bunch of meaningless clods at all - they're your *friends*, and not only are they cool people, they're so much cooler than you ever gave them credit for that they saw your ridiculous blunders, kept their mouths shut, and went ahead and liked you anyway.


-T- said...

friendship is overlooking flaws - both ways. On the occasion of my tenth birthday party some friends and I had a wrestling match in the living room. Instead of being Hulk Hogan, I was the Under-arm Stinker, and tried to smell them into submission. The fact that I was infact, putrid, somehow amplifies the fact that they remained friends.

Anonymous said...

Funny, I was driving around at lunch earlier thinking that adolescence, and even the early to mid 20's, were just try-outs for who you really are. It takes such a long time to find yourself, then realize every decade that you've rediscovered a new self. Over and over it goes.

This is the stuff I think of waiting for Taco bell.