a person who puts on a happy face in front of company? that’s fake. that person is being inauthentic. yet the person who’s asked “happy birthday, how are you?” and responds, “i have been obsessed with the fact that, turning 30, my first suicide attempt was 17 years ago” is not going to be the most popular person at the party.
our culture demands we be fake.
anything real is scorned.
we love artificial! we love unnatural!
women are not hairless, yet the reality of women having hair disgusts us. we demand that women shave, tweeze, wax. we demand this fantasy, this collective delusion.
men do not exist in a vacuum without emotion, yet they are expected to bottle everything up, and put on a drag act of masculinity. that’s what’s expected. we demand the fantasy of the their unassailable strength.
every part of our culture rewards bullshitting. how many women would sleep with a man who approached them and said, “please have sex with me”? even women like me who are aware that it is a game are turned off by this unwillingness to follow absurd and manipulative social convention.
“rudeness” is often someone being honest or real in a socially unacceptable way.
when someone asks you how you are, your culture forbids you from honesty. you’re not supposed to say, “i am worried about my parents’ mortality.” you are not supposed to say, “i feel i haven’t accomplished enough by age 30.” you’re not supposed to say, “youth is currency and i’m growing poor.” & you’re definitely not supposed to say, “i’m extremely alone, i have no community, i think my sadness is actually a deep mental illness that is spiraling out of my control and i have nowhere to turn, i have alienated nearly every one of my friends, and i’m constantly contemplating whether or not my consciousness has a right to life.”
so i didn’t say, “i am so depressed. i want a hug.”
i said, hi. i said, how are you doing. i said, you look great.
i said, thank you for coming to my 30th birthday party.
ha-ppy bir-thday to me.