Thursday, February 23, 2017

GRAY IN L.A. "Don't Take it Personally!" - BUT I DO!

Photo: Eva Napp

**** Don't you just love it when people, friend or foe, are doing or saying something - and hastily add to it a, "Don't take that personally!" ****

I think I want to start a new Blog where I really really want to be totally controversial, confrontational, blunt, direct, "aggressive", attacking, frank, fresh, feisty, free, funny (oh, it's the "F" words again) - IN SHORT: Un-American! And I want to punch a hole in all the daily pretense and charades and empty phrases, failing to address REAL issues that burn up my energy. It might be the Trump-Blues, or it's just that Life's dark shadows are following me 

around, whispering questions into my ear, but I'm losing patience with a lot of things. Here's a phrase I keep hearing a lot lately from people I know well, even very close friends. I have two who are very busy, like we all are. I haven't seen either of them in many months. I know that's supposed to be just normal life, I'm supposed to find that fine. But their attempt at making this non-issue is an issue I have. They say: "Don't take it personally!"

I always kind of liked the phrase, "Lemme ask you this..." because it meant that a certain type of question was about to be asked. Even better was the, "Let me be devil's advocate here". Sure, go ahead, LOVE them both! And, of course, the most idiotic of all phrases: "Just out of curiosity..." Yes, indeed, questions are mostly 
connected to a certain curiosity, are they not? Therefore you don't have to say that, ok?
In this case I use all 3 phrases myself and ask the whole Universe: "How else do you want me to take it, if not personally?" And I would like to add: "If you don't want me to take it personally - could you please make an effort and do say something personally?"

I'm sensing a trend here and I think it's not healthy, even if it is understandable sometimes. People are incredibly stressed, they are afraid and worried, they don't want to get close anymore because that would mean opening their hearts and minds, showing emotions and doubts, pains and despair - therefore making them also vulnerable.

The point is, I LIKE to take things personally, I think it creates an interesting challenge and closeness and makes for lively, honest conversations that even lead to something - like discoveries about each other! I also not only like to take things personally, I like people to take ME and the things I do and say personally, because I'm a person who tries to be as personal as possible. Why? Because it gives me a soft, warm, emotional and personal feeling. It glosses over my insecurities and makes me feel like being "seen", recognized, something we all crave, no matter how silly that is.

Of course, there are things I definitely don't take personally or really don't care about one way or another. Like when a dog would try to bite me, or if the bus driver doesn't smile, or when a homeless let's down his pants in broad day light and starts peeing into the street - a daily sight in Hollywood. Nope, not taking any of that personally.

As for the rest. If you want to get a point across, need to throw in some criticism, have an ax to grind, have a real different opinion about explosive topics, don't say to me, "Don't take that personally!" Make it personally! It could be stimulating and wonderfully authentic. And I can take it. Really!

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