I ended up going a party (I didn’t intend to, because I had midterm today – Monday – but in the back of my mind I knew it was inevitable). I went as the Son of Man – you know, that painting of the guy with the apple in front of his face? I thought everybody knew it, but apparently not…
I spent the first few hours at this party kind of wandering aimlessly. I am really terrible at parties. I don’t think what people are saying is interesting and I don’t have anything to contribute. That’s not to say I don’t find parties and people interesting. It’s loads of fun to silently judge people across the room….
(When did I become such a jerk? Maybe it’s out of boredom.)
Anyway, after the Party Crowd left, there weren’t many people I didn’t know around and it got better. One of my acquaintances was quite drunk and started telling us everything about himself and – well, he’s usually a pretty silly/interesting guy as it is, but even stranger while drunk, apparently. He encouraged us to share as well, because he likes to hear people talk about themselves and to challenge their boundaries and observe reactions to the self and all this pretty strange – but unnervingly familiar – stuff.
He was basically saying all the things I think on a daily basis, that I’ve found, through experience, people are not comfortable with. If there’s one thing I’m competent at, it’s being honest about myself with other people. I’m very open. There are some times that I hold back – although not necessarily because I don’t want people to know, but more because it seems people have trouble intaking information objectively. If I say, my mother died when I was young, people make all these assumptions, they say they’re sorry, the whole thing is awkward. I don’t want to make people uncomfortable to the point that they want to leave. I want to be open and for people to feel as if they can be open as well.
Where am I going with this? If I do “NoJoMo,” I think I’m going to have to make my entries shorter.
I remember reading On the Road. There was something that always stuck with me from it – Dean tells Sal that he (Dean) has decided to embark on a human-soul-reconnaissance mission. Those weren’t his words. He was telling everything about himself to another person, and the person was telling everything about himself in return. They were holding nothing back. They were sharing things they barely let themselves think most of the time. I wish I could find the passage. I think I’m going to end up re-reading the whole book if someone doesn’t reply on Yahoo Answers soon.
When I read that, I remember thinking – that’s what I want. I want to have complete access to another person someday- their hopes, their dreams, their reservations embarrassments ideas hubris past present opinions relationships – everything. And I want to meet someone who wants this as well. Someone who would be willing to embark on this completely crazy journey that can probably only end badly, but would be totally awesome anyway.
It’s hard enough to find people who are that open – who will answer any question you ask them (although most people – myself included – don’t dare to ask in the first place), much less people who would be willing to be that open with a stranger. And I would have to be a stranger, because my friends won’t do it. And personally, I think it’d be a lot harder with someone I know rather than someone I don’t.
And diaries don’t count. Especially the online kind. I want hours of face-to-face interaction. I want to see someone when they’re talking. I want to see how they sit. I want to know when they get tired, when they are happy to talk, what comes out of their mouth first, what comes last.
My problem is not finding someone I’d be willing to tell everything. Like I said, I’m an open book. Not to say it’d be easy. It’s the challenge of it that’s enticing. But first I have to find someone not only willing to do it, but that I trust not to back out in the middle and decide (without telling me) to not say something.
How does one propose such a thing, though?
The other person could not have time, or think it’s stupid, or be creeped out…Or maybe I’ll just come off as really vain, thinking that another person is interested enough to listen to everything I have to say. Or maybe…
I guess it’s stupid to worry about what another person will think of you when you are proposing to tell them every single detail about yourself, though.
I know this is pretty heavy stuff compared to pigeon-catching. But, well, any takers?