I think a lot. You might have guessed this, because A.) I have a blog, with which I record thoughts that I think were worth thinking, B.) I have made promises to be fairly prolific in my thought sharing, C.) you already know me, or D.) because you already know me, you know I’m a huge nerd who has trouble shutting up. And because I know my friends too, if upon reading option A you were surprised to learn that what you are currently reading is my blog, I need you to turn off your computer and go to sleep. You’ve been on the internet too long.
I tend to do a lot of thinking in my car, not only because I spend a fair amount of time in the car due to the fact my current job is located halfway across the city, but also because letting my mind wander is preferable to the other game I play while stuck in traffic: Staring sullenly at the car in front of me and wondering if they are 1.) asleep, 2.) actually dead, or 3.) A giant wad who is doing this on purpose because the angry nerd behind them is fun to watch, and therefore actually deserves my enmity. I let my mind wander so that I spend more time distracted and less time swearing at innocent people.
I promise I will get to the point, though I do feel that I need to point out you’re in the wrong place for concise, well-written and well-organized stories. Regardless, I feel like sharing one of my recent traffic-induced musings would be a fun, lighthearted way to launch my blog. So here’s a thought I had instead of envisioning a Ford Focus being consumed by molten lava:
On the way to work today, after swearing at a car whose make and model I will not mention (and whose only fault was changing lanes in front of me), I called myself an asshole. Out loud. I don’t know if other people do this, but for me a good spasm of rage isn’t complete unless I add a little bit of self-loathing. Anyway, a little voice immediately comforted me: No you’re not, you’re a good guy. I almost didn’t even register it, I’m so accustomed to my little voice. You see, that’s not my conscience. My conscience would speak in capital letters. No, that’s what I call my anti-conscience, my little voice, telling me what I did is okay. Most people have a little voice that says “yeah, do it, it won’t hurt anybody,” when they’re about to do something they know is a bad idea. I have that too, but it goes even further and tells me I’m a good person when I feel bad about minor stuff. In other words, the little devil on my shoulder actually feels the need to comfort me when I’m feeling bad.
But that’s old news, I’m used to that for the most part. It may say something about my psyche, but I’m used to it. What it made me do was something I hadn’t done before: I examined all those things my little voice had told me were okay, and figured out whether or not I was lying to myself. Unsurprisingly, I was.
They’re not big things. I didn’t murder anyone, or steal anything valuable. But there were a series of little things I had done throughout my life so far. So I had to realize- yeah, there were times when I was a little asshole to other kids. Yeah, were times as a teenager that I ended relationships for no good reason. But mostly, I realized that not everything I have ever done was for a pure reason, or with good intentions.
But that’s okay. I have to be okay with it, because it’s part of who I am. I just have to try to be aware of what my little voice says. I’m not encouraging you to be a jerk. I’m just saying that I tried to justify my actions, to hold myself to a higher standard, and in the process I denied myself the chance to become a better person by recognizing what I had done.