Melanie goes to a Christmas party

I went to a Christmas party last night after a nice evening of unwrapping presents and gorging myself on prime rib with my family.

When I first arrived at the party, gossip was already running rampant.  I walked right into it.  The object of the gossip was my friends mother’s new boyfriend.

“I just want to punch the guy in the face.  He’s telling me that he’s a VP in Manhattan and that I haven’t traveled internationally until I can say I traveled to India.  I can’t stand the guy.  He one-ups me on everything.”

They were tuned-up and aggravated while standing outside next to the fire, drinking beers and smoking cigarettes.

I love gossip.  The way people gossip says more about the person gossiping, than it does about the person they’re gossiping about.  I love people’s reactions to people and things – I’m partially addicted to reactions.  But even still, I knew I had to meet this guy they were talking about.  I’m also partially addicted to crazy people.  They fascinate me.

I was about three beers deep when I met him.  I walked into the living room and a man sitting on the couch called to me, “hey there come sit down.”

He patted the open spot next to him on the couch.

Me – “Oh no, that’s okay.  I like to stand.”

Him – “Oh no please, come sit down.”

Already I didn’t like the guy (I’m horrible I know!).  I didn’t know it at the time, that this was the crazy man from the gossip.

I sat down.

Him – “So tell me about yourself.  What do you do?”

Me – “I’m a massage therapist, I live here in Cheshire and I’m actually looking to buy a spa here.”

That’s all I told him.  That’s exactly what I told him.

Him – “You people are all crazy.”

Me – “Um, what?”

That’s when it hit me.  I have found the crazy man.

Him – “I’m just sitting here looking at all you people and I can’t stop thinking how crazy all of you are.”

Me – “How are we crazy?”

Him – “I’m from Manhattan.  I’m a VP from Manhattan but I’m more calm than any of you.  You’d think since I’m from Manhattan that I’d be more…agh..crazy, but all of you are the crazy ones.”

He looks directly into my eyes.

Him – “I’m more calm than you.”

I was supremely angry – over-the-top angry.  The thing with me is, I’m not scared of anyone – what I wrote about in my last post about how we agree with people in order to feel less alone in the world, doesn’t apply to me (or at least, it applies to the people who actually know me).  I have no filter when it comes to dealing with people like this.  But instead of letting my mouth get the better of me I say…

Me – “Oh I know you.  I heard about you.  You’re the guy with the mental problems.”

Hold on now, I didn’t say it in an angry way – but in an honest way.  Okay, maybe a little angry.

He squints at me and shakes his head.

Him – “Mental problems?”

Me – “Yeah, but it’s okay.  I’m not judging.  Everyone’s got shit.”

I forgot what he said after that.

Me – “Are you scared?”

I hit the nail.  I could tell because his whole body shifted and he shook his head not knowing what to say.

Basically, short story long, I made the guy break down in tears.  He sobbed like a baby – a grown adult man dressed nicely with an attractive appearance, whimpered to me and started telling me about his dead father.

Me – “You’re lonely and scared.  You don’t feel like you’re enough for anyone, or enough for yourself.  You keep telling everyone about all your accomplishments, but nobody cares.  And honestly, nobody does care.”

Him – “How do you know all this?  I just met you and you pegged me in less than three minutes.”

I touch his hand.

Me – “Compassion.  Compassion happens when you understand someone.  When you don’t understand them, and you think everyone’s crazy – that’s when compassion is gone.  You have to have compassion for yourself first before you can have it for others.”

He wipes at his tears.

Me – “You have to understand yourself and that means complete brutal honesty.  But people can’t do that because of their ego and pride.  People can’t let go because they want to remain in control of who they are.  But the ironic thing is, people can only control who they are once they let go of who they were.  Admit you have faults, and then let them go.”

Him – “You are so articulate.  How do you know all this?”

He turns his head to the woman who was his date for the evening.  She just sat down.

Him – “I only just met this girl but she know’s me.  It’s really something.  How do you know all this?”

Me – “I’m actually writing a book about it.  I have a structured philosophy that applies to everyone.  You’re not the only one going through this.”

His date (my friends mother) – “What is your book about?”

Me – “It’s going to be a philosophy book.  I have this really good philosophy about people and why we’re all here.”

His date – “Oh…haha (she was incredibly inebriated), philosophy is hard.  I can’t understand it.”

Me – “I can’t understand it either.  I don’t read other people’s philosophy’s, I just have my own.  It’s easy if it’s your own.”

His date got up and left her seat once the man’s attention turned back towards me.  She was waisted and trying to hook up with all the men at the party.  Dysfunctional much?

(Can you see why this blog is secret?)

He started crying again about his dead fighter pilot father, and went on and on about how he’s a VP and lives in Manhattan.  He kept circulating back.

Now, I’m clearly no saint – I may understand people, but it’s patience I lack.  All I can offer is understanding and that’s about it.  I care as equally as much as I don’t care, if that makes any sense.  I’m not proud of it.

I thought to myself – “This is what it would feel like if I was a psychologist.  I’d see this guy once a week and he’ll come cry to me about his problems without getting any better.  There’s no possible way I can be happy and look forward to this kind of work.”

Him – “Can I get your number?  Can we go for a coffee sometime?”

Me – “Sorry, no.  I’m not interested.”

Him – “Oh, that’s okay.  It’s okay.”

Me – “Well, I need a refill.  I’ll see you later.  Just remember that you’re not alone in this.  You’re never alone.”

I got up and went downstairs to hang out with the cool kids.  About 30 minutes later, we heard arguing upstairs and found out that one of our more vocal friends lost her shit and started screaming at the guy whom I thought I could “help.”

Everyone applauded her bravery, and the man left the party.

My friend – “Oh your name is John?  How do you spell John?  Dee, eye, see, kay.  That’s how you spell John.”

Everyone at the party became ecstatic, relieved, entertained, over John getting verbally bitch slapped while I stood there feeling uncomfortable.

Me – “The guy is in pain.  He has a lot of hurt.  He has legitimate mental problems.”

I can see why everyone was happy about him getting poopsocked.  She said everything they wanted to say but couldn’t.  But all I saw was cruelty.  I don’t agree with it, but I can understand it.

(I like the word poopsocked.)

It’s depressing because I do understand it.  How people want to vent and let out their frustration onto others.  It’s also depressing to know that I’m not any different.  In fact, I might even be worse.

I was passive, dismissive, and not emotionally attached to his insults and immaturity – perhaps I was the crueler one.  I was cruel because I didn’t care enough about the guy to get me angry enough where I would verbally assault him.  What I did to him instead, was much crueler.  And if everyone at the party reacted the same way I did, the guy would still be in tears.  Completely shattered.

When he started crying real tears I said to him – “this is good.  This is a good sign.  It’s okay.”

I patted him on his shoulder.

At least after getting slammed with a verbal poopsock, he left feeling angry and his anger dispelled the pain of having to face his dreadful ego.  He found someplace (outside of himself) to place the blame.

It was exactly what he wanted.  To be seen, to be noticed, and to hold the power to elicit anger in others.  If he could elicit raw emotion in others, that means he still has power – he is someone, and not nothing.

People who feel compassion towards you, people whom you can’t emotionally touch – there’s no place to hide from those people.  It’s a slippery slope with no handholds.  Completely disarming.  It’s like looking into a wax figurine’s dead doll eyes.  You only see your true self and your own fears.  Just a reminder of how alone you really are.

But it’s all in their heads!

John had no clever comebacks or arguments – no substance or conviction that would cause him to stand up for himself.  But he taught me something (a lot actually).

He went on and on about all his accomplishments, but he didn’t say anything of substance.  Just like a salesman trying to throw you a pitch by using empty, but flavorful words.  There were no details anywhere.  Only a repeating of the same over and over again.

When people keep circulating back to the beginning and repeating everything all over again, there’s a glitch in their software.  Something they’re not hearing.  Something they don’t want to hear, or admit to.  They’re unable to move forward.

They don’t understand because they have no compassion (which I’ll talk more about in my next post [a breakdown of what compassion is]), and their wheels are stuck in mud burning off tread.

I thought about sales people who are really good at making speeches.  When they try to sell you something, if you listen closely enough, you’ll notice that their words have no substance, no value – they are empty with a covering of hype and decor.  Repeating the same fixations, getting the crowd really involved.

I attended a Donald Trump real estate meeting once.  It was free and proclaimed that they would teach Trumps secrets to anyone who was interested in hearing them.  But as we sat and waited, anticipation rising, hearts in our throats – there was nothing.  No answers.  Just “buy our program”.  “The program has the answers.”

Anyone who disputed the salesmen were poopsocked with animosity and shame.  Anger percolated the room and it emanated from the sales people (there were two of them).

When I first heard Obama speak, I didn’t trust him.  He’s a salesman trying to sell you stuff.  Nothing he says includes any details or substance.  That’s off topic, but just thought I’d throw that in.

John is trying to sell him self to his own dream – his dream of becoming someone of importance (because of his fear of death, but I won’t get into that [I’ll save it for my book]).  He has no substance, and no belief in himself.  He’s unable to sell himself to his own dream, so he fights to sell it to others.

His thinking – “If only others believed it, than it will be true.  Then I’ll believe it too.”

But it has to happen from the inside out (I wrote about that before).

Recognition and validation.  It’s everywhere and in everyone.  Just on different degree’s and/or hidden behind clever manipulations.  John was not clever, or hidden.

I really do have a fully functional, structured philosophy.  Two days ago I wanted to put it all down on paper.  The difficult part is finding out where to start and how to organize everything.  I was going to make it into a blog post, but I’m thinking of turning it into a book.  A free ebook for the masses.  I mean, why not?  Right?


My niece and I share the same Netflix account and yesterday she was telling me about a show called Deadly Women.  It’s about real woman who kill with no mercy or guilt.  I’m watching it now.  Holy crap I can’t watch shows like this.  Nobody should watch shows like this.


Filed under journal, philosophy, Self help

3 responses to “Melanie goes to a Christmas party

  1. Hi Melanie,

    I care deeply about compassion. It has been the driving force in my life. To relief the suffering of all being. Of the bird trapped in a net, an ant trying to save himself when I take a shower, my homeless friend, the politicians, the business leaders. My compassion grows, as I get to know myself better. I see all the pain, the anger, the resentment, blame, sadness, fear in myself. And I see it in everyone around us. I see how we are all interconnected. We are not separate, the failure of one is the failure of all. We need to support each other finding strategies that nurture all needs. No one is better than me, no one is less than me, no one is equal to me. We just inter-are. I hope we all get to a place of compassion for ourselves and others.

    Elly van Laar (512) 589-0482 Contact me /compassionate communication and conflict resolution/

    follow my blog

    • Thanks for the thoughtful comment! I too have saved many a spider in my shower. I always root for them when I see them fighting the big drops. I’m at the point now where I don’t kill spiders anymore and I let them roam freely around my house (I even give them names). However, centipedes are another story. I can’t stand centipedes.

      Are you sure you want to post your number? You’ll probably get a few calls from it.
      Compassion is the way to go. It’s wild man, it really is. Once you understand it, shit is nuts.

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