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I don’t think people self-reflect enough. Most people, anyways. It seems like when people get confronted about something, instead of taking a look at the situation from multiple views or considering what the causes of the issue could be, they immediately look for justification instead. The “power in numbers” justification, especially. Nobody wants to admit that they’re wrong, and most people don’t even recognize that they’re wrong when they are. (Of course, “right” and “wrong” are sort of blurry notions and very subjective in many cases, but that’s a different point for a different day.) Rather than analyze the situation, it seems like most people would rather justify themselves by finding a group to agree with them. One person is pissed off about something (i.e. a test that they feel was unfair, somebody that criticized them for something, opposing opinions, etc.) and instead of considering how they might be wrong or looking at things from another view point, they tell their friends, all like-minded individuals who don’t have the guts to call them out for anything. It’s like people think that just because a bunch of other people agree with their point, they’re automatically in the right. People have opposing opinions. Lots of people don’t get along well with lots of other people. That’s a part of life. However, if you’re going to argue a point vehemently and spend your energy hating someone, consider all sides and make sure you’re justifying your actions. Yeah, that person’s opinion is fucking ridiculous and their way of expressing those opinions is not well thought out at all, but try and consider how they arrived at their conclusions and why they feel the way that they do. Yes, that girl is a bitch and she’s done a lot of shitty things to really nice people, but you shouldn’t be attacking her on the basis of the way she wears her hair or what she ate for breakfast.

What I’m trying to say here is that you need to consider that you might be the asshole in the situation and you need to think things through from multiple viewpoints really well before you get up in people’s faces about things. If nothing else, consider the following: Analyze other people’s opinions and arguments in order to better debate with them and don’t waste your energy hating people for stupid reasons. Hate people efficiently or not at all.

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I am not anti-religion by any means. Some people are religious and some people aren’t and that’s all fine by me. I don’t mind listening to what people have to say about their beliefs, either. I like hearing different views and opinions. That’s cool. I can respect that.

It doesn’t bother me until listening to someone’s beliefs turns into being patronized. To suggest that my lack of familiarity with your religion somehow negates my intelligence is nothing short of offensive. Do not treat me as your inferior if you want me to hear you out and respect your opinions. Imply that my life is unfulfilled, that I’m lacking in depth, or that my education is worthless simply because I am not religious or because my beliefs are different than yours, and I will stop listening.

If I’m being polite and open-minded enough to listen to what you have to say, don’t insult me by suggesting that I’m living my life all wrong. I am a human being, not a sheep. You don’t need to guide me back to the flock.

RANT OF THE DAY!: Marriage (and maybe a bit of love, as well)

Excuse me if the wording in this is even more odd than usual. I decided not to sleep last night (not for any good reason, now that I think about it), so my brain isn’t really firing on all cylinders. All of the words are there, but not necessarily in the right order. Or context. Or language. I could wait to write this, but it’s very much at the forefront of my mind right now.

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Spending Time Alone: Why It Doesn’t Suck

I know so many people who can’t stand being alone. They don’t like driving alone. They don’t like shopping alone. They don’t like going to the movie theatre alone. I think the herd mentality has been so beaten into people’s minds that they are actually afraid of being by themselves. I won’t disagree that there’s safety in numbers, but I don’t see any use in being scared of being alone. (Not in everyday-life settings, at least.) I think alone time is something to be enjoyed.

I have spent so much time alone, as of late. For a variety of reasons, I have had no desire to be around people. Nothing personal against my friends, I just prefer being on my own lately. I have gone to the movies by myself. I have gone out for lunch by myself. I have gone to the beach by myself, out for walks by myself, libraries, shopping malls, short road trips, etcetera, etcetera. It’s awesome. If I don’t want to talk, I don’t have to. If I want to go somewhere, I don’t have to get anybody’s opinion beforehand. I feel so much more confident and productive when I’m on my own.

There is something comforting about being surrounded by strangers. Nobody knows you, and you don’t know anybody either. Their first impressions and opinions of you are of no consequence, as you’ll likely never see them again. There is no pressure to act in accordance with any sort of reputation because as a stranger, you have no reputation. Being unknown gives you a lot of freedom. This freedom is much harder to come by when you’re out with a group.

Alone and lonely are not necessarily the same thing.

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DRIVING: A poorly organized rant

I have said before that I do not like driving. I would like to clarify. I like driving. I had an excellent drive out of state yesterday. No traffic, great music, quiet company, very little rain, and a smooth ride. I love my car, I love 70 mph speed limits, I love mix CDs. However, I do not love the other idiots that are on the road. Allow me to elaborate.

There are some drivers that will tailgate you for miles. There are no other cars around them, they just enjoy trying to make you drive faster. Then, they will change lanes, pass and get in front of you. But instead of speeding off,they will slow down.WHAT FOUL, SPITEFUL DEMONS HAVE POSSESSED YOU THAT YOU WOULD DO THAT TO ME? HOW DOES THIS BEHAVIOR SUIT YOUR PURPOSE AT ALL?

Or perhaps when you’re in a hurry to get somewhere, and you’re driving behind somebody incredibly slow. The simple solution would be to pass them, right? Well, as soon as you change lanes and accelerate, they decide to match your speed and drive perfectly parallel to you so that you cannot get over. Keep accelerating, they do the same. The elderly woman in the Cadillac next to you who has been driving 30 mph in the passing lane for the past ten minutes is now driving 20 miles over the speed limit. Are you racing me? Is that what this is? Or are you just pissed that I’m trying to pass you? Stop being a dick. Let me get in the left lane, damn it.

Turn signals. Turn signals are very helpful. You know, when people actually use them properly. Do not bother putting your turn signal on WHILST YOU ARE CHANGING LANES. THAT IS USELESS. I can already see that you are changing lanes. You have done nothing to warn me ahead of time, as you were supposed to. Bastard. This is a turn-only lane, so I already know that you’re turning. I get that. You don’t have to tell me. You could have let me know that you wanted to be in this lane before you swerved into it, last-minute, but you didn’t. It is now too late. I have already determined you an annoying driver and will be blogging about you within the hour.

I could go on, however my list of things to rant about is long and this is but one topic. More to come later, my friends.

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Being alive and interacting with others is a very complicated thing. Very, very complicated. Everything you do has an effect. Everything you don’t do has an effect. And it’s often pretty difficult to know what that effect is. Share your problems with another person, and you may have just burdened them with the weight you’ve been carrying. You may very well have triggered one of their own problems that they’ve been trying to suppress. But how much can you keep to yourself? At some point, won’t you have to let something out?  It’s like trying to fit everything you own in one suitcase. You can pack everything away neatly, but life moves on and you will find yourself frustrated again and all of these new frustrations don’t fit conveniently with the old ones. So you take everything out and you get upset about all of these old things that you had already stored away and forgotten, as well as whatever new things you have to worry about. Maybe you can share some of these things with others so that your own situation is more manageable, but then you’ve just added to the pile of things they’re trying to deal with. So do you let everything build up until it explodes all over the place, or do you force others to deal with your shit?  

Very, very complicated.

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AUTOPLAY MUSIC.

NO. STOP THAT. NOBODY LIKES YOU. GET OUT.

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I survived the supermarket.

If I could just close the supermarket to the public while I do my grocery shopping, that would be lovely.

Married people. THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING? You know those married couples that feel compelled to touch each other in public? They were in abundance today. It’s never just an arm around the shoulder. It’s full on groping. Really? You’re going to play grab ass right here? Right in front of my shopping cart? I don’t want to interrupt this thing you guys have got going on right now, BUT YOU’RE BLOCKING THE YOGURT. MOVE. AHORA. It’s not even sexy groping. They look really uncomfortable and lost and a little confused. Public display of… affection? Is that what that is? I can’t tell.

I feel like people are judging me when I shop. Why are you looking at me? Stop staring at me and my weird groceries. YES, I REALLY DO EAT THAT MUCH. I can feel you leering at me. Ugh, just let me buy my groceries in peace.

I can’t tell if the employees are supposed to be that friendly, or if only creepy people apply to work at grocery stores. How many times have you asked me if I need help finding anything? Three? I think I’m good. I’m a big girl, I’m not going to get lost in the store without Mommy’s guidance. How am I doing? I was fine, until you started following me. OH LOOK YOU’RE SHELVING CEREAL IN MY AISLE AGAIN. THAT’S ODD, BECAUSE CEREAL IS IN AISLE 7 AND THIS ENTIRE AISLE IS FOR ETHNIC FOODS. I’m in high school. You have a beard. This is not going anywhere. Take your cereal elsewhere.