A pastime I’ve noted on the part of a few of those that would call me an “acquaintance” (or more) is the deconstruction and examination of my many human shortcomings.
It’s as if I am a puzzle and a cautionary tale to be examined and swept hastily under the rug. I have that anti-aura. If nothing else, I perplex and confound. I am a man of many bad habits and unrecognizable tendencies and people reckon themselves detectives over my personal horror.
We were discussing my alienation and inability to relate to people. I am aloof, and even when I speak with others, it seems they truly don’t connect to me on that personal, human level of trivial significance most normals seem to enjoy. I detest small talk and repetitious conversations interlaced with streams of redundant observations. I believe something only needs to be said once, twice, tops, and beyond that it turns into boring, suicidal blather. This is why I hate work meetings and many focused discussions. They inevitably turn into agonizing recitations of self-aggrandizing drivel.
Beyond this, there is something alienating and ethereal about me, perhaps my demeanor, perhaps my facial expressions, voice tone, pathological speech patterns…perhaps perhaps perhaps. This is all conjecture and this is why others have opinions about my Fall. The one thing I can say with certainty is that there is assuredly a dissonance between me and that which brings most people together and allows them to relate and coexist on a level that is an oblique measure of normality and homogeneity. Then there is me. I failed to learn how one must ascend to this level and thus, its elusiveness is my alienated quagmire.
I used to worry about it. When I was young, I aspired to that common, human level everyone around me seemed to attain quite easily and naturally. I struggled and was despondent. Age and capitulation have led to a blissful state of apathy and smug defiance. I don’t care to be like people now. I don’t want to join this collective human pool of idiocy and blind conformity. I’m proud of my personal diversion from the herd.
Why can’t I be proud of this?
Everyone is proud of their own bullshit. Everyone is aware of their own bullshit. These identifications have become franchised elements of modern society. There are groups for homos and stunted Aspies and fatties and cripples and every goddamned seedy race under the sun. Why can’t I be proud to be an alienated cretin?
As a conclusion to my self-examination, she told me that I seem to have built a wall around me. Instinctively, I agreed to the vague metaphor of my insular nature.
But I thought better of it. I told her it wasn’t a wall I built.
It is a moat.
I’ve built a moat around me. A moat containing the demons of ostracism and antagonism. A moat that has been dug into the trenches circling my existence that prevents anyone from entering my personal domain.
Not a wall. That’s the wrong symbolism. A wall would insinuate that there is no interaction between me and the outside world. A moat, on the other hand, recognizes that I am quite willing to interact with the world on a superficial level (look at this stupid blog) but only from afar and from behind the protective safety a of a chasm that prevents others from crossing intact. Those who know me, and have entered my castle, at one time subjected themselves to the perils of that gulf.
I’ve built a moat around me. Humanity and I can wave at each other, we can shout and speak loudly but it’s all banal bullshit diluted by the width of the moat.
The moat allows me to be without being a part of you.