Sunday, January 15, 2012

Reading Between the Lines

There is an old rock n roll song that says "paranoia will destroy ya."  It is unfortunate that many people do not heed those words.  They see hidden meanings behind the words of others and make presumptions that the words apply to them.  For example, if one says, "I like the dress that woman is wearing," then the paranoid will presume you mean that their own dress is ugly.  Should one tell the neurotic person that the lasagna he cooked the other night was fantastic, he will wonder what was wrong with the pot roast he cooked last night.  By presuming, they destroy the moment by twisting everything to fit into their own distorted view of the world.

I was about twelve when reality first struck me.  Two friends were talking and as I neared, I heard one say, "yes but he's always butting in."  I was hurt.  Did my friend really think that I was so intrusive?
Like a fool, I quickly replied, "I didn't realize you felt that way."  At first, my friend thought I was joking, then, realizing I was serious, hit me with reality.

"Not everything is about you, stupid!" he said laughing.  I then learned that they were talking about a student who kept interrupting the teacher and was told that if he did not raise his hand, he would not be acknowledged.  Their conversation had nothing to do with me, but the interaction taught me the truth of life.  No one spends their whole life thinking about me.  Even the closest of friends or lovers have other things that go on in their lives.  Therefore, they will speak about those things without regard to yours truly.

Reading between the lines comes from a place of paranoia.  "I know someone is thinking something bad of me and I simply have to find it."  Eventually, if one reads between the lines, they will most definitely discover the hidden messages, even if the speaker did not intend the meaning assigned to his/her words.  We fear being the fool who does not see the truth, when in fact we become the fool who saw what is not there.

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