Thursday, 10 July 2014

Tonight's Surprise.

Do you know what? Somebody from the village asked me tonight how old I am, and before I could answer he made a guess. He was twelve years out. I decline to say whether it was forward or back, but I reckon his error was due in no small part to the way I’ve been walking since I started taking cod liver oil capsules.

I said I wanted to find something silly to say, didn’t I? That’s the best I can do.


Anonymous said...

Does it bother you when people misjudge your age? It bothers me a little. Everyone assumes I'm about 6 - 7 years younger than I am, which is significant when you're only 24.

JJ Beazley said...

My ex had the same problem (still does to a lesser extent.) She was still being asked for ID in pubs – on the assumption that she was under 21 – when she was in her 30's. It bothered her a lot; she felt she wasn't getting the respect which is generally afforded to more advanced age.

It's odd that I was always thought older when I was in my teens and twenties, but now people seem to think I'm younger. That way round doesn't bother me at all.

And I sometimes wonder whether there's a flaw in counting people's age by how many times the earth has orbited the sun since they were born. I reckon I have three ages – 5½, 32, and 87 – depending on my mood and the situation. None of them fit with the solar orbital method.

A lot of people seem to be 24 at the moment…

Anonymous said...

It's for exactly that reason that I dislike when someone misjudges my age. I want to be afforded the respect I deserve.

There may be a flaw in how we measure age. Most people had a startlingly underdeveloped inner life for the age they're at, which means they're probably petty and possibly foul (and stupid, I think, but that can't be helped, nor does it have much to do with how long you've been here). People continually disappoint and irritate me for that very reason.

I don't know many 24 year-olds...

Can you tell I'm feeling a bit miffed today?

Anonymous said...

*most people HAVE

I didn't proofread.

JJ Beazley said...

I remember a picture of you on your blog, holding two forefingers out like guns and smiling. I think it was something to do with spring, and I thought it utterly charming.

Not sure why that sprang to mind. Maybe it's because being miffed doesn't seem to suit you, somehow. Music and kindness to animals suit you.

I know what you mean by respect, although I never had that problem. I got into pubs, cinemas and so on years before I was legally entitled, and nobody ever questioned my age. And when I was just your age, somebody asked me to visit a relative who had been bereaved that day. Later, she said 'Isn't he SENSIBLE for his age?' I was, but now I'm going backwards. I think it's all a matter of what energy you put out there. People read energy, even if they don't realise it.

And I should have said 'None of them fits...'

People disappoint and irritate me most of the time, too.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you found it utterly charming. It's good to hear nice things from people you respect. I remember that time you commented on that video of me, singing. It was complimentary without being obsequious, and was most welcome.

Too many people don't ruminate on all the interesting facets of life. Like how we instinctively read energy. And, you know... other stuff. (So complex, I know).

JJ Beazley said...

Thank you for the word 'respect.' I value it.

We could talk about this all day (and I'd like to) but I think the nub of the issue - what sets some of us apart from the rest - is deep awareness. Most people feel a raindrop on their skin, but they're not deeply AWARE of it. And it doesn't just hold for simple sensory input like shapes, colours, smells, textures etc, it also goes for the subtler things like atmospheres and the energy people give off. People sense that energy, but most of them aren't deeply aware of it so it doesn't affect them too much. Hence the expression 'thick-skinned.'

It seems to me that we of the highly aware breed have a problem, because it's a two way process. The stuff coming in tends to reflect back and makes us highly expressive. That can be an attractive feature because it's perceived by others as a vibrant personality. On the other hand, it makes us more vulnerable to negative input, so we get hurt more easily. We see people who hurt us as being cold or callous, when mostly, I think, they're just being ignorant (or insensitive, which amounts to the same thing in this context.) It all makes life a bit of a struggle, which I suppose is why we ruminate.

As you say, complex...

Anonymous said...

EXACTLY. I'm trying to think of something else to say, but you so beautifully expressed the concept that I'm having difficulty.

Do you feel you have to throw up walls to block out negative stimuli? Sometimes - and this is very interesting to me- I find that I descend into a sort of numbed state whilst in certain situations where my deep awareness would allow far too much information in, resulting in sensory overload.

In the same vein, this wall keeps me safe from other individuals. I'm actually a very friendly and loving person, but most people don't get to experience that part of me. I come across as private and, probably, a little weird. But what I've learned is... you let people get at the soft heart behind the wall and they find ways to damage it. Deliberately. Or sometimes, as you said, because they're oblivious. I can't figure out which is worse.

JJ Beazley said...

Heavens, Sara, you're keeping my brain on its toes! Well done (I think.)

I have issues going on today, difficult ones, so I'll try to get back to you later when the dust's settled.

I've learned, by the way, that 'weird' is the default perception of all highly aware people. You're not alone.

JJ Beazley said...

With regard to the question of walls/barriers, the short answer would be: yes, I do. Unfortunately, these barriers have a limited effect because:

1. If you have a negative situation which requires the erection of a barrier, that barrier blocks out the good stuff as well as the bad. You become a kind of zombie - 'numbed' as you put it.

2. If you don't erect a barrier, the negative input swamps you anyway ('eats away at me inside' as a friend described it recently) and you still can't respond to the good things because you're overloaded with the bad. In short, you virtually stop functioning and everybody knows you're in a Bad Mood today!

No win situation!

Where people are concerned, there's another problem. Highly aware people get extra good highs as well as extra bad lows, and I happen to be a bit of an extra good high junkie. The tendency with me, therefore, is to drop the barrier too easily purely out of eagerness. If the person doesn't live up to their promise, the drop from high to low can be a bit of a shock to the system. That means I have to place a lot of reliance on early impressions, which are usually right but not always.

I find as I get older that my awareness is growing, although I seem to be erecting fewer barriers and, instead, riding the situations more philosophically. (There is one situation where I still throw up the barrier instinctively at the first sign of trouble, but the explanation for that one is both complex and a bit too personal for a public blog.)

Should we meet half way and talk about this at length? Greenland would be about right, although I'm not sure they have any coffee shops there.

Anonymous said...

Now to tackle the mammoth.

Very interesting that you drop the barrier quickly. It takes far longer for me to feel comfortable with people. Part if it's for the obvious reasons, and part is... well, I don't like to freely give away hints to my character. I feel it may cheapen my existence, to be too open to people who probably won't deserve it.

That sounds TERRIBLY egotistical, h.o.w.e.v.e.r, I formed these conclusions based on experience. And I hate wasting my time on people who don matter.

Is any of this making sense?

Anonymous said...

**hints OF my character

JJ Beazley said...

...and 'people who *don't* matter...'

Ha ha. Only kidding.

Yes, It makes perfect sense, and is probably a good way to be. I admit that I have occasionally felt that I've let myself down when I've opened up to people who subsequently demonstrated that they didn't deserve it. I think there are several reasons why I drop the barriers quickly:

1. In spite of contraindications on the blog, I'm actually an incurable optimist

2. The older I've got, the more my first impressions have been uncannily, though not infallibly, accurate.

3. I'm terribly impatient.

4. When it comes to matters of the heart, I'm a reckless risk-taker. That's the one I'm learning to temper, albeit too late.