Who are you people, and how did you get control of this planet?
I suppose I’m depressed.
If you suffer from it, you know that no amount of jokes or friendly ribbing is going to tease you out of it. Oh sure, you can put up the smile the way you put up Christmas lights – all the neighbors can see them even if they leave you cold – but lurking under that is that abiding sense of ennui. As I once heard, “Telling a depressed person to ‘cheer up’ is like telling a blind person to ‘look harder’.” If it was that easy, don’t you think we would have done it?
I’ve reached a point where I truly am beginning to feel like I must be a different species or from another planet. I just don’t get people. All the stuff you run around doing, driving all over the countryside to do this, that, or the other thing, cheering for sports teams, or taking a day cruise, going to movies, out to dinner. I just don’t get it. What’s the point? What does it do for you? How does it change your life? I don’t get the current obsession with BDSM but judging by the news and how many other people do, I really know I’m not one of you. To me it’s such a bizarre concept. But, this is what your lives revolve around, so be it. I don’t understand anything about you.
The tribal predisposition. You find the most trivial ways to separate into new tribes all the time. Hairstyles, clothing colors, personal conveyances, profession, beliefs in supernatural entities (or lack thereof), skin color, eye color, hair color. I’m so tired of trying to sort out who’s in which tribe. I was apparently dumped on this planet, alone. I have no tribe. And sports – Modern wargames where one tribe tries to kill the other tribe, and all the villagers turn out to watch the battles. Some of the villagers get killed occasionally, but rarely do any of the warriors die. Peculiar way to fight battles.
And the way you love your guns and war… If you didn’t love them so much, they’d be gone. But people love war. They LOVE it. When 3D printers burst onto the scene just a few short months ago, what was the first thing someone made with one? A gun. That’s right. And they’re even easier to make now, completely plastic. Someone (or a lot of someones) find this important. I make jokes on Twitter about being a Viking and swinging my battleaxe, because, again like the Christmas lights, people find it amusing. And for the record, I don’t get Christmas lights either. So, favorite human pastimes include killing people, and cheering up the survivors with Christmas lights? You people are just weird.
The things people find important just baffle me. Like these big ugly houses they like to build
What the hell were they thinking? Well, they were thinking of themselves. For more on big ugly houses, there’s a whole series of posts about Big Ugly Houses in and around Walnut Creek, CA, an area I know from having lived there for almost ten years. Look for the one the writer dubbed “Xanadu.” It will make you shudder. It looks like a fortress from an alien world. I just hope it’s not from whatever alien world I’m from, because WOW would that would be embarrassing.
Celebrity worship. Why? Why do you fall all over yourselves to place on pedestals people who do and say horrible things? Or just useless stuff? If you’re going to worship other humans, why not scientists, philosophers, educators, crisis aid workers? Allow me to suggest one that I find particularly noteworthy. I’m posting it nearly full-sized to make it easier for you to read, so you don’t have to keep clicking:
A great man, a great thinker.
But, maybe I’m not entirely alone. I suspect the recent trend and popularity of dystopian, post-apocalyptic literature and movies are indicative of a general dissatisfaction with modern life. For me, it’s a possibility of a ‘reset’ button, to get away from the structure of society around banks and money, or power-mad egomaniacs with bombs, and maybe find a better way to organize society. I don’t know what that better way might be, as I am not the great thinker Dr. Sagan was, but with luck those who are might be able to lead us into a better future, one built on more compassionate foundations, and not about oppressing others to improve one’s own lot in life.
If you’re gonna dream, dream BIG, I always say. Back to writing.
17 thoughts on “I’m Not One of You (I Hope)”
Depression is a terrible affliction. It sets us off from others who don’t want to “catch” what we have. Fortunately, it usually doesn’t work that way. I’ve always felt like an outsider, whether it was with my family, friends or while I was in the Army. Today, I still feel the same way.
As for the trend for dystopian “entertainment,” my vice would be Ray Bradbury’s novel, Fahrenheit 451. I would love to escape the “non-thinking” world and find myself following the train tracks to the, Book People. For now, my friends and family are my books, and with them, I won’t be alone for the rest of my life…however long that might be.
Keep looking up, DD, at the night sky. The stars beckon us: Carl is already there, so the party has already begun. 🙂
Thanks, Jeff. I don’t usually like to talk about it, and it’s not to the point where it’s debilitating, but I just feel myself moving further and further away from understanding ‘normal’ people. Ah well, I expect I’ll swing back in the other direction eventually. Good thought about Dr. Sagan. 🙂 That’s the only thing that takes away my fear of dying, knowing of all the great ones and loved ones who are already there.
Good Morning, DD.
I’ve had a couple of people in my life who have suffered from Depression.
I used to be one of those people who thought I could “save” them from it. Wasn’t until I was older that I found out about what you mentioned about “Christmas lights”.
It’s hard for a person with my personality type to accept that there is nothing you can do about it. I suffer from a condition that makes me believe I can solve everyone’s problem if I only apply myself.
My Parents and my Wife have often told me, “Not everyone’s problems are yours, Eric.”
Yeah, I know….and often times it has lead me into trouble, or into places where I put myself at risk.
Not being able to help is often times heartbreaking. Thinking you were successful in helping and finding out later that it really didn’t help at all OR that it made things worse, is probably the worse thing I think I ever feel.
Talking about it with people has made me understand that, unless you are suffering from it too, you have no idea what they are feeling.
So I now understand also that the only course of action left to someone like me is to say, “I don’t know how you feel and I’m sorry you are feeling like this. I’ll be right here if there is anything I can do.”
Makes you feel completely useless, especially if the person is someone you care about a lot. But, I understand it’s about the only thing that can be done.
I agree with you about Tribal behavior and hero worship. Makes me sad to see what you describe, happening. All too often we enjoy the misery of others. With reality TV we’ve learned to market it too.
There seems to be a willful progression towards idiocy. Kind of like a, “yeah we know what the smart decision would be…but wouldn’t it be more fun to act this way?!?”
At least people like us have writing and can find some way of letting off some steam.
Thanks for all that. I totally get what you’re saying about wanting to help. Before I started dealing with this I never understood what it was like for someone. I used to think people were just being divas, or seeking attention. The best thing you can do is just don’t dismiss it, don’t treat it like it’s not real. Like Dumbledore told Harry, “Of course it’s happening inside your head. That doesn’t mean it isn’t real.”
I don’t know, maybe it’s just here in the US where we are so privileged and have so much that we’ve lost our minds and binge on excessive housing and cars and clothes and still nothing is ever enough. If you’re not killing yourself to climb the corporate ladder there’s something wrong with you. It’s just all so exhausting anymore.
The Carl Sagan quote is right up there with the last stanza of Lincoln’s First Inaugural. Funny you should mention fawning over celebrities…just a half hour ago I was walking home and there was a slew of people and paparazzi waiting outside The Mark Hotel like Moses checked in. I was too tired to inquire who they were waiting for, but I never get that either, because being around lots of them, I’d say 2 out of 3 are assholes. I’d list them, but I’m from Connecticut. Enjoy when you rant…you do it with such elegance and style.
LOL thanks, Susannah 😉 The whole idea of hanging around for a glimpse of someone who will never know you exist, and wouldn’t care even if they did somehow actually notice you in the crowd, is just so odd. Like rabid sports fans who paint themselves in team colors.
Well if it WAS Moses he could part the crowds to get through at least.
I felt weird “liking”this post — not that I don’t agree with everything you’ve said, it’s just that there should be another, more realistic option than the word “like.” That word implies “nice” in a superficial way, and what you are talking about is far deeper. Many people are uncomfortable with discomfort — they don’t like to be reminded of suffering or they they think it’s a “downer.” Well, bad sh!t happens and when it does, it’s awful. And sometimes there isn’t much else to say about it.
But please know you are not alone. You are brave to speak of it so thoughtfully. Being “thoughtful” is woefully under-rated in today’s society where a premium is placed on the newest, fastest next Big Thing.
I knew you’d understand. I’m just really struggling with dealing with people right now. Must be my Vulcan half asserting itself. Humans are so illogical.
It’s lonely at the top. Seriously, I don’t mean to sound like a snob, but a lot of ignorant people like a lot of dumb crap, and it’s really, really hard sometimes for people whose think a little ( or a lot) more deeply, whose tastes are a little more discriminating. I won’t tell you to cheer up, but no fooling darling, you’re not a alone. We are here for you, day or night
Thank you, my friend. I just feel kind of adrift right now, detached. It’s nice to come home to a quiet house, and not have to deal with more people.
There is no point to any of it, so you may as well have fun whilst you’re here. Don’t waste your time looking for answers: they will only depress you further if you should find them. Life is too short.
Some days life isn’t short enough.
Truth be known, I’ve been married for 20 years & love having Fang around, but between us, sometimes I like coming home to a quiet, empty house, too 😉
Your secret dies with me. 😉
I know I can count on you.
Wow, great post, DD. I think it’s so easy to be depressed when you feel you don’t fit in. I know I feel the same way. As much as I love my friends I just don’t get their obsession with certain things (fashion, celebrities etc). I’m fortunate in that I like being alone otherwise things could have been worse. It’s great to know that there are people in other places who have similar viewpoints 🙂
Thanks. I’m still not sure I was able to really convey how ‘alien’ everything feels. It would be like going to a barbecue at a friend’s house, and sitting back and not even wanting to talk to anyone. I’d rather just wander off down the road by myself. We can be aliens together.
Live long, and prosper
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