Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate.
This could be the shortest blog entry ever if I just left it with that statement. But, being a writer, ten words just isn’t enough for me to spout off everything I need to say.
Back when I filled out the “about” section on my facebook page, I said this one line. Not a single person has ever commented on it. Of course most people probably don’t read the “about” section. I don’t typically read theirs, so why would they read mine? I look at their pictures and laugh at their jokes and sometimes “like” their status but since I rarely friend people I don’t know I don’t need to read “about” them.
Or at least that’s what I tell myself.
Perhaps I should read “about” them. Maybe I’ll find something I don’t like or I’ll find something we have in common and that will change my opinion of them.
Except I don’t work that way.
I don’t know if it’s something about being an artist that makes me different in how I view the world, or if it’s something about the way I was raised, or maybe it’s something about the experiences I’ve had in life. I just don’t seem to see things the way other people do. It’s like I see … more somehow.
And yet, sometimes I seem to see less.
I miss things that other people fixate on. The clothes people are wearing, their hairstyles, who they talk to or don’t talk to, what kind of car they drive, where they work, where they live, what their religion is, who they live with, … none of that makes my top ten list. I can’t even tell you what I wore yesterday let alone anyone else. And do not ask me if I think it’s cute. I don’t. But I also don’t think it’s NOT cute.
Those things just don’t make a difference to me. I was asked the other day what I see when I look at someone else. My quick and somewhat sarcastic response was to say “a person”. But I knew what they were asking. They wanted more than that. Normally, I end with the sarcastic comment. It’s easier that way – for them and for me. That whole thing about being an artist and expressing myself through my art … yeah, I was serious about that. Conversations are not my thing.
But writing is.
When I look at another person, I see a sum of everything that has happened between us.
I see their face, their eyes, the way they move and flick from one thing to another or stay fixed on a single place. For some eye movement indicates someone is “lying” to them. For me I try to determine what they are distracted by. Maybe they are lying but maybe they are just distracted by the air conditioning clicking on or a car driving by.
I watch their body to see how it moves, how they use their fingers to comb the hair from their face or gesture with their whole arm to emphasize their story or move around continuously unable to stay still.
I notice what they pick up or put down, that cup of steaming coffee, another chocolate chip cookie, a stack of papers, their three year old child.
I hear their voice, something soft or loud, sarcastic or not, made up or firmly believed. The words don’t matter as much as the tone, the innuendo.
I see their forehead wrinkle, their lips push out or pull in, their eyebrows dance.
I see … a person.
People are complicated. People are the sum total of all their experiences in life and yet, they aren’t because they are so much more than that. And for me, that’s what makes the difference in what I see.
I don’t look at people for who they are here and now because it’s all a lie. It’s a microcosm of humanity. A tiny little slice of what is real. People aren’t just what they wear or what job they have or where they live or what they say at any given moment in time. People are bigger than that. People are potential as much as they are experience.
That’s why judging other people is just … wrong.
I read somewhere that you should never judge another person until you have walked a mile in their shoes, that way you will be a mile away and you will have their shoes.
But I like to flip that around. If someone wants to judge me, they are welcome to do so as long as they walk a mile in my shoes. That way, they’ll be a mile away so I don’t have to listen to them and they’ll have my shoes so I can go buy a new pair.
The whole point is that when you promote what you love, you change. Your view point on the world changes. You see things differently. You see what you love. And when you see what you love, what you hate disappears.
Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate … the world will be a better place.