Talkin’ Shit (10)

‘Hypothetically- (hell, hypothetically, it happens all the time) people talk shit. Bitch about x or y, drop innuendo about who is doing whom, gossip because talking trash is a thrill. And I don’t. Generally, don’t trash other folk, don’t want to discuss other people’s relationships. For lack of a better description- makes me feel icky.

So this happens around me, and I don’t interject. Generally, don’t participate. I don’t complain or counter either A friend and I had a long talk about it. He said I should do myself a favor and stand up for myself- or at least for whomever they might be trashing. Just say, knock it off.

So not me. know when people are doing that, they’re talking out their butts. They’re blowing off steam. They have opinions about whatever it is. And if I disagree, I won’t make them like x or y. If I say, I’m not comfortable talking about who’s banging whom, it won’t stop the tide of dish dealing. So gossiper 1 (a friend) gossips about gossiper 2 (also a friend). Shrug it off? Gossiper 1 (a friend) disses a friend- not a gossiper. Shrug it off? Someone suggests that I’m doing something untoward…nudge nudge. Shrug it off?  Most happy to say good things about someone, but the negative is hard. Shit, even when I’m mad, I don\t dis. I might talk about bodily injury or how I will deal (leave, hit, some plan of action)- but generally, not disregard. I’ll make voodoo dolls. Mutter incantations…seems healthy to me.\n\nIt takes energy to let it slide. But much less energy than confrontation. To come across holier than thou- (and I’m not, I may think all kinds of things, I may agree, it’s the spreading that I can’t do). It eventually stops, since I don\’t keep my end of the conversation going. And if there\’s enough critical mass that it goes on, I\’m off somewhere else (at least mentally). I don’t fight. I walk away- quietly. Is this a bad thing? Is it a sin of omission not to come to the aid of a friend? Is it a test of love or loyalty to say, “No, that\’s decent person, and why on earth would you say something like that?” Am I a wimp for not saying, “Why the fuck would you ever think that?”, even if it’s me that’s the joke?

Smile. It goes away. (It- the joke, the thought, the smile).

I know it is in part cultural. To smile and not talk about bad things. In this respect, there are times I do feel alien. What an odd thought that this friend- watching from the outside- feels I\’m being walked over. That being nice is in an open invitation to be abused, overpowered or disregarded.\n\nI work with some very strong-willed opinionated folk. It is the nature of the job being in academia. I’m not sure that I can easily convince him that I have my own power. That turbulence washes over and around me, and that I am still me and can be quiet, is a power all its own. But still, there is the question of that sin of omission. That, without a doubt, in the midst of shit talking, I do feel dirtied and drained. And maybe being quiet, isn’t enough to absolve myself.

comments

 

Elouise’, ‘ero@it.rit.edu’, ‘2004-05-16 20:41:17’ – ‘How many argumentative asians do you know? When I read you post, I mouthed “Enough is enough.” and giggled. The words sound great in my head, coming out of my mouth if feels the same way it does when I attempt a Scottish brogue…which sadly always turns more Indian. You’re right. Yet inertia and nature conspire.

Liz’, ‘ell@mail.rit.edu’, 2004-05-16 20:41:17 – Perhaps you can find a middle ground, somewhere between “smile and shrug it off” and “why the fuck would you ever think that?” Both of those are extreme ends of the response spectrum…”Enough is enough” isn’t so bad. “I’m really uncomfortable with the tone of this discussion” works pretty well, too. Walking away (rather than just mentally drifting away) sends a strong message.

Elouise’, ‘ero@it.rit.edu’, 2004-05-16 20:41:17′, ‘Hypothetical- over beers, the table starts trashing . Reality–this is work culture. Even if I am indifferent to administrator flava, the conversation usually starts to put me into a mindset that the place I work must be bad…which I have to actively counter in my head.\n\nCan you imagine in the middle of this trash talk – which is seen (I am culturally this aware) as sport, me saying “enough is enough”? Party comes to screeching halt. It happens in a variety of levels. But it is a sport. An active way most people bond…to find common enemy, to pass on tribulation.In this context, it’d be like saying, “Enough hacky sack in the hall.

fivecats’, ‘fivecat@nc.rr.com’, ‘http://www.livejournal.com/users/fivecats 2004-05-16 20:41:17′ – So the party comes to a screeching halt? Why not? So you ruin their Fun and Bonding for a few minutes. Okay. That seems a small price to pay for being almost assured of not being invited to those kind of parties again.\n\nAnd, you might even find that other people are sharing your desire to not be included in those discussions. \n\nTeach your kids well. Show \’em what a strong mom does in the face of icky stuff.

Elouise’, ‘ero@it.rit.edu’, 2004-05-16 20:41:17′ – Context is everything. Except for the occasional forays into ickiness…generally, I like the folk I hang with. (See next blog entry about the culture of gossip). Tell you what, when I figure out the borders of ickiness that require I break beyond my inertia, will let you know.

Cath’, ‘cii@it.rit.edu’, ‘2004-05-16 20:41:17 – I am guilty of occasionally bashing or snarling about a select few folk who really tick me off, for the simple reason that I want someone’s perspective to suggest alternatives that my anger does not permit me to see. (Usually yours or Liz\’s…) It tends to be more of “I can’t believe someone is so bloody incompetent” comments as opposed to sexual ones. I think it is an affirmation thing.

Elouise’, ‘ero@it.rit.edu’, ”2004-05-16 20:41:17′ – Girlfriend, when you’re angry it’s pretty evident. Huge difference between venting and gossiping. I can see the distinction. It’s the stuff that’s delivered more subtly that’s the more insidious.
Francois Lachance’, ‘lachance@chass.utoronto.ca’, 2004-05-16 20:41:17 – Yesterday in a comment to “lovely things” an entry of March 27, 2004, I mused about looking for differences between the paired entries that I have been exploring through a fold in the blog that maps June 2003 to March 2004. Well, “nose adrift” covers blockage at one end:\n\nhttp://weez.oyzon.com/archives/000856.html\n\nAnd here the talk is about the talk that won\’t stop coming out of the metaphoric end. Even when looking for differences I keep stumbling upon an odd sort of symmetry. Smelling with one\’s eyes?!
weez’, ‘elouise@Oyzon.com’, ‘http://weez.oyzon.com’, ”, ‘2004-05-16 20:41:17 – ‘http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~lachance/jardin/html/INVERTTEIBLOG.HTM From With Towards\n\n…In a very fundamental fashion, writing is about how to segment and how to align. Pick a point. From that point there stem a before and an after. Pick another point and observe that part of one point\’s after is part of another point\’s before and observe a between that emerges with its own before and its own after…

rancois Lachance’, ‘lachance@chass.utoronto.ca’, ‘http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~lachance/jardin/html/blogTEI.htm’, ”2004-05-16 20:41:17′, ‘Wow. playing tag with Weez in and though the blog. What fun! What Weez just quoted back to me is from a meditative bit on Brian Cantwell Smith’s On the Origin of Objects. And I have a note to myself that it (Smith\’s book) should be read in conjunction with Michael Leyton\’s Symmetry, Causality, Mind. I think a character named Logz needs to respond to a character named Dia on Geoffrey Rockwell\’s blog where some fibrelle of a similar thread is growing under the entry Quantum Computing and Information http://strange.mcmaster.ca/~grockwel/weblog/notes/000316.html

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