The inspiration from this post comes from John Mayer's song Say.
Growing up, I was taught that if you didn't have anything nice to say, don't say it at all. This of course didn't come from home as my parents were quite open minded about saying your mind. It was different as I entered the hell gates of primary school.
As surprising as some might find this statement, I was rather timid and awkward. I was playful though and it did what others did. Anyways, my first brush with saying sugary lies was when I was commenting on the condition of the fences at the school. It was kind of dodgy and sharp and someone could get hurt. The teacher who heard me comment said "Eh if you think you're so great go into a private school lah"
I was shocked at her remark but didn't care much because in my mind it was what I thought so what?
Then I came into university and the very same thing happened. It was one of those journalism classes (Journalism's my minor) and we had to debate about this topic on derogatory language in newspapers in the international scene. It was normal in Malaysia to find people posting ads for let's say Kadazan, 28, female but not overseas because it was considered prejudice.
It went from the ads to an American newspaper that used the word black in one of their columns. I then proceeded to say that that's not possible in this day and age because black is well in ethical terms, a BAD word. The moron(lecturer) said that it's okay because they are used to it. USED TO IT?! Gila ke apa...
My African friends and I went ballistic and argued to the extent one of my friends walked out of the class because she couldn't stand how stupid he was. Saddened by my friend's reaction "You know there is such a thing as civil rights" I blurted. He shot the look of death to me and gave me a C+ for that class. *rolls eyes*
At that point of time I didn't think I was rude and I sure as the sky is blue knew that I at least deserved a B.
Those incidents were just the few from the many that I have encountered. I'm sure that there are many out there who have experienced arguments and when they knew they were fighting a losing battle they just started to pick on you until you kept quiet. Very mature. Either that or give you the silent treatment.
Seriously, not a day goes by that I don't worry about many creative minds stunted having faced a similar plight to mine. And this is just at the micro level.
In some countries, which I am not obliged to mention, someone could get imprisoned just by speaking their mind or voicing out their anguish about the current government system.
Whatever happened to democracy and freedom of speech? It's a dead term like Latin is dead to language.
How can someone truly know the true value of his/herself without having honest feedback from others? Makes me wonder how many times I've been walking around the mall feeling I was the most gorgeous thing in sight (lol.) only to have a booger that is hanging out of my nose and no one bothers to tell me about it.
There's a thin line between honesty and animosity though. In my opinion, one can say the truth without hurting the other person's feelings if their intentions were clear enough. Even if it was hurtful tone does play an important factor. I guess that etiquette and down to earth manners also play a role in speaking the truth.
I know I'm guilty for this as well.
There's plenty of times where I let things slide between myself and others. Them saying hurtful things to me. And many of those times I wanted to fight back but hesitated. Slowly I was resenting them and I ended up torturing myself.
Am I a sucker for pain??
But I guess all those years of turmoil have gotten me to where am I today. A laser mouth chic with an attitude to match!
For as long as I can remember, after times spent on reflecting the workings that is Ari (me), I have come to terms with the fact that hey you know there will always be smart mouths as*es out there. I've just got to step up to it.
I've always like made up good comebacks in my mind during the times where I couldn't or was too blur/shocked/anguished/disappointed/etc/all of the above to retaliate. Bah!...
Anyways I've got a good collection of comebacks anyhow. My brain just needs to work faster. hehe
Food for thought.
WHAT I LIVE BY
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do. It's not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own lights shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.