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As it Turns out, Normal People *are* Boring

ETA: Please note the following before replying: the numerous question marks, indicating uncertainty and introspection; the part about not calling people mundanes; the part where I specifically acknowledge that I am not the arbiter of what is interesting. Thank you.

I just signed into a public PC, and the previous user must have been pretty lax about personal security, because he had taken no measures to sign out of gmail. Of course, I hastily signed him out (and, no, I did not violate his privacy further by clicking on any messages) but not before happening to see something like 80 subject lines, as well as the two or three labels he had for categorizing his mail.

Holy crap, normal people are boring. I really do try to give them the benefit of the doubt. I try never to use the word mundane as a noun anymore, and when I talk to them at work, I try to imagine that the topics they bring up are only that dull because they keep the good stuff to themselves (as I usually do). But... they don't make it easy to defend them. All they seem to care about is sports. Maybe shopping or cars. It's kind of depressing. At least to me.

I wonder if folks who live entirely within the norm don't worry much about privacy because there is nothing in their personal lives anyone could take issue with? It that a blessing for them, maybe?

I will continue to try to assume that, if I were an unethical sort of person who was willing to delve into that fellow's messages, I would have discovered that he really was a fascinating individual. I suppose I am not the arbiter of what is innately interesting. But, really. Jebus.

Comments

fenriss
Jun. 27th, 2008 06:08 pm (UTC)
I should point out that nowhere in my original statement did I specify *who* precisely the non-boring people were. I just happen to be lucky enough to know a whole lot of them!

I entirely agree that people are not interesting *purely* on the basis of "being weird" (however one chooses to define weird.) I do think that much of the time, people with really broad and unusual areas of knowledge and interest tend to be perceived as weird, so perhaps it's the other way around. Perhaps being interesting make people weird.

I dunno. There's no "freak" ethnicity, and there is certainly no ethnicity that make one cool. It just seem that there's this bland majority that don't seem to care about much beyond a very limited scope of topics, and that's just find for them. But to me, it seems kinda boring.

Oh, and for the record, I actually think Martha Stewart is pretty cool. Whether or not she is good dipped in butter is a question better left to the experts.

Edited at 2008-06-27 06:09 pm (UTC)
smoakes777
Jun. 27th, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC)
Well, I guess if your definition of "non-normal" is "interesting" then yes, normal people are boring.

It might be quicker to say boring people are boring, though.
fenriss
Jun. 27th, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC)
OK, look. I am beginning to regret posting this in the first place. I'm sorry if I offended you, but I'm just weary of arguing with people today.
redsteve
Jun. 27th, 2008 09:02 pm (UTC)
Don't be sad, Miss Wolf. I don't think that any of the people that kow you well really think that you're an intolerant elitist monster (that's my job). As the old saying goes, "We're not fighting. We're just discussing things in a very assertive way."

That being said, I think there is a lot of confusion in how people view the terms "freak" and "normal". Being a freak isn't all about the music (although many have weird tastes in music - possibly including showtunes or medieval polyphony) or what color your hair is (or even liking science fiction). Personally, I consider anyone a freak that is really into one or more non-mainstream activities/interests - or, ideally, more than one. By that standard "theater people" are freaks - so there! And as to "normal people", I slap that label on anyone who gets their opinions/interests from TV, spends too much time caring "what the neighbors think", and is rigid in viewing gender/racial roles. If I had a dime every time I had a co-worker use a Seinfeld/Friends episode to describe a person/situation/difficult concept, carried on a lengthy and emotional conversation about some character in a reality show as if they actually knew them, divided almost all activities by gender (i.e. guy stuff vs. girl stuff), acted totally baffled (and at the same time very judgmental - if often oh so quiet) about other cultures/sexual orientations/races, and casually mentioned that they hung out exclusively with one gender (with the exception of their s/o), I'd have a big enough sack of dimes to deliver a fatal beating to them.
fenriss
Jun. 28th, 2008 01:10 am (UTC)
Thank you, my dear. Your kind words are very much appreciated.

You also paint a *marvellously* vivid picture of "normal people" as I see them. They are easier to exemplify than define, I guess. That's exactly what I'm talking about right there. The life defined by Seinfeld, and that's almost a best-case scenario. Often, you're talking about American Idol. And the sex-segregated worldview is an important point as well. It's so horribly ubiquitous. I'm sick to death of those "10 reasons why wo/men are useless" emails. That's supposed to be an immediate ice-breaker for new coworkers. As a woman, I will naturally feel comfortable standing around the water-cooler, defaming the opposite sex.

*gnashgnashgnash*

OK, before I make myself feel worse, I will wish you a wonderful FD@KD! Hugs to all who will be present.
redsteve
Jun. 29th, 2008 03:01 pm (UTC)
Thanks. We had a great but sticky time. See you Friday!
fenriss
Jun. 27th, 2008 11:37 pm (UTC)
OK, I'm feeling a little more stable now, so I feel like I can make a half-way coherent reply to this. I have to assume that I hurt your feelings, so please let me apologize.

I am absolutely sure that your friend the gay theater critic, your husband to be, and all of your other "normal" friends aren't the least bit normal by the standards I apply. Like Nikki, I've known plenty people with a pound of piercings and an all-black wardrobe that would bore you to tears, and offend you with their small-mindedness. I don't know how you are defining normal, but my my definition, anyone who works as a porn star, talks late into the night about how to destigmatize hallucination, or likes to spend their lunches enacting impromptu puppet-theater cannot possibly count as normal. And I'm certain that normal people would agree with me.

When I say "not normal" I'm talking about something a little like Robert Anton Wilson's Neophile. I'm talking about people who are more at home in the realm of the possible than the realized. I do not care what they wear, what music they prefer, or even if they enjoy the occasional football game (provided that's not their only interest).

Even though I have a great deal of affection for the term "freak" I avoided it here, because I was hoping to avoid a lot of assumptions about how I was defining that. Guess I failed. The very last thing I wanted to do was put anyone on the defensive.
smoakes777
Jun. 28th, 2008 07:01 am (UTC)
It does touch a nerve with me, but I think I came off sounding a lot pissier than I intended, and I'm sorry for that.
I think I may have been responding more to similar things other people have said, other times, than to what you wrote. And, you're one of the most caring and accepting people I know.

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