One of the things I’ve really learned this year is that people aren’t nearly as bold as they make themselves out to be. The people who boldly proclaim their emotional self-sufficiency and how they don’t need a relationship to be happy are the first ones to lose their minds and their individuality when someone gets interested in them. That’s always good for a laugh for me.
In a similar way, I love the bold statements that someone speaks their mind directly and doesn’t beat around the bush. I can respect that, but I also crack up when such a statement of directness takes the form of a vague post aimed at nobody in particular. It’s entertaining.
There’s plenty of religious and philosophical boldness to go around, especially on social media. Yet on the occasions that I try to engage a bold proclaimer in genuine, respectful discussion in order to learn more about their views, the response is either a deflection, a shutdown, or crickets. It’s like a recording of a lion’s roar being played in a mouse cage. I just have to shake my head and laugh. Bring your floaties, kids. We’re swimming in the deep end of the irony pool today.
Don’t think I’m coming down on anybody here. Hey, I’m not a fountain of never-ending boldness either. I feel that emotional twinge that comes with deciding whether or not I should say something that could be hurtful. I sound like a stuttering auctioneer as my mind frantically tries to determine the best way to say things. And since I’m so rarely ever asked what I think about anything, I keep my thoughts to myself the vast majority of the time.
For all the boldness that’s claimed in so many ways, it’s funny to just sit back and watch it crumble when tested. People are far more concerned with being right than they are with simply being human. But hey, do your thing and be you. As I sit with a drink and a cigar in the unseasonably warm December night air, I’m reminded of a quote that seems to hit the nail on the head: “Maybe everybody in the whole damn world is scared of each other.