Being wrong about most things isn’t really that terrifying experience; that blank confused face is often reflected back to you by those who are supposedly older and wiser. It’s been a while since I’ve cowered awestruck in a corner unable to say anything intelligible to some unattainable all knowing creature. My theories about why this is (I can’t let anything rest; once it’s flitted in my brain it needs to be captured and crushed – I really wanted to add catalogued, but my brain is about as organised as my sock drawer) include i) maybe I’ve suddenly become more intelligent; ii) maybe I’ve suddenly become less intelligent and can’t appreciate it in others; iii) I’m older – most chat is less impressive when you’ve heard it before and can quote something that said it better; iv) everyone around me now is just less impressive than the folk I knew when I was young and impressionable. I’ve just re-read that – my god I’m such an utter delight.
I dislike being so badly wrong about myself. This is inconvenient, given that whole ‘you’re not the best judge of your own character’ chat. The battle against hypocrisy (which i fail at, constantly, obviously) seems to have conditioned me to have some kind of internal twitch every time I say something utterly ridiculous and at odds with what I said five seconds ago. I do it a lot. Sometimes I think it’s just collateral damage to the torrent of nonsense I can’t seem to hold in. Sometimes I wonder if I’ve maybe changed my life view (or, you, actually properly adopted one) without realising it. I have the urge to scream corrections to previous statements – or just explain away everything with alcohol/tiredness/pain/some disaster, etc.
Today I’ve had a little bit of an ‘oh my god, the things I’ve been criticising you for are things I do too.’ My inclination would be to hunt down everyone I’ve spoken to recently and share this revelation. I realise noone would care, so I might just about be able to stop myself. The bit that bugs me is that this seems to be a sign of weakness – occasionally you see people crack and admit a mistake, but usually it’s brushed off or ignored. The confidence to keep ploughing on isn’t dented at all. How can you be so confident, knowing your wrong? How can you look at me like I have two heads when I ‘admit’ to all this stuff? Has it honestly never crossed your mind?
I’m getting a little fed up of performing to an empty room or of constantly speaking some untranslatable language or something. I’ve read books. I’ve watched films. My god, I’ve even listened to rubbish pop songs. It really cannot be that weird.