Lately I have found myself shouting, “People are the fucking worst,” a little more than usual. Enough to the point where it made me take a step back and ask myself, Am I becoming that cynical?
Truth is, I dislike most people. Before you think I’m talking about you, I’m probably not. Most people that I surround myself with on a regular basis made the cut, so you’re safe. But I also think that most people believe that saying you “dislike” someone means you “hate” someone - and that couldn’t be further from the truth.
Remember when I wrote an entire book about going on hundreds of dates in a few months? Well, somewhere in there I made a dating analogy to a school lab partner. You know when the teacher would randomly pair you with some person in class that you weren’t friends with? Not that you particularly hated them, just that you had nothing in common with them enough to justify a friendship. You were nice enough to them and studied together and made the experiment work but in the hallway you never gave anything more than a head nod.
Weighing the thousands of meetings, dates, and interactions, I have come to realize that 10% of the people you meet are some of the worst humans in the world, 10% are some of the greatest people you will ever meet, and 80% are nice enough but will forever get the head nod.
Maybe that’s me being overly judgmental or jaded but it’s taken me decades to stop beating myself up trying to fit into what is expected of me on so many levels. I recently read something to the effect of, you spend your youth desperately trying to fit in and you spend adulthood desperately trying to stand out. And that was when I realized that I wasted so much of my life feeling unhappy because I couldn’t/didn’t live up to the standards of others. For better or worse, I simply wasn’t destined to be ordinary. I have tried normality and it feels like wearing a heavy polyester suit at a long easter church mass with no air conditioning - I just can’t wait to get home and put on my emotional black band tshirt.
I can’t do a certain life. And sometimes I wish I could. I wish I could be happy with what makes other happy. I wish I could be content with what was normal, my life would be so much easier. But I can’t fake it. I have tried and I feel like tearing my face off for being so untrue to myself.
So I accept it. Me. And sometimes I walk down the street quietly loathing people, and I still give a respectable head nod. But most of the time I run toward that amazing 10% who make life tolerable and wonderful. I surround myself with equally self-loathing non-civilians who motivate me with their smiles and their unbridled enthusiasm for all things non-ordinary.
I wish I could say that this is the life I chose - but that would be a lie. Because if anything, I would have chosen the life with least resistance. But that’s not how things worked out and that’s fine. More than fine. Because I get to call you my friend.
Former Rockette, famous blogger and current Insider host on CBS, Keltie Knight is at it again with her second book,The Imperfections of James and Kate, released Friday Feb 14th 2014. Keltie is very prominent in the entertainment business, she has been a professional dancer for years, had her share in dating celebs, has interviewed countless people, and has since formed an astonishing career for herself as a blogger, and writer. Keltie say’s since her last book, Rockettes, Rockstars, and Rockbottom she has written around 5 or 6 books, though this one of James and Kate “really stuck to the core”.
Episode 124 with special guest Crazy Courtney.
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My earliest memories were filled with sad eyes and hushed apologies for the excuses of my mother and the violence of my father. My babysitter was one of the only people who wanted something better for me, which stood in stark contrast to the words screamed at me over dinner tables and empty vodka bottles. She always seemed to apologize for the actions of the irresponsible. My mother, for her inability to get away from my abusive father. My teachers, for my broken family. My neighbors, for their rotten children.
Rarely did anyone ever apologize for his or her own actions and even when they did, it was too late. The damage was done. What’s the use of an “I’m sorry” to a child after the punch was already thrown? A few seconds of insincere apologies never fixed the black and purple eyes that lasted for a week. I learned at an early age that the apologies of those in charge were simply indicators that they would continue to betray my trust. Because of this, I have never taken an apology seriously since the age of eight. Not anyone else’s and certainly not mine.
So come on, save me. I dared every person who I touched. None of them ever had the ability to fix my head. Not for their lack of trying. But if you’ve never seen an internal combustion engine, how the hell do you expect to get under the hood and repair a misfiring cylinder? The women came and went, but they never had the knowledge. They couldn’t understand because they never knew the dark nights and shadowy figures that crept into my bedroom. They never felt the “bad touch” the way I did. They never knew the taste of their own blood before they learned how to blow out birthday candles, and they never knew what a leather belt felt like 10 minutes before the yellow school bus arrived.
And thank God.
They should thank whatever they prayed to that they didn’t and wouldn’t understand the horrors I wrote about. It would be an even bigger tragedy if anyone did.
Night after night, the streetlight came through my apartment window and reflected off their pretty, well-intentioned and watery eyes. They expected relationships and said things like, “I wish I could take your pain away.” And, “I’m so sorry someone did that to you.” Or the worst, “I wish I could fix you.” It was genuine. I couldn’t fault them for their concern. But, I was not a project. I was not someone’s personal challenge. I wanted her, any her, to look into me with a smile and say, “This, this right here is perfect for me.” But they didn’t. They all thought they had to “identify.” They didn’t get it and they didn’t get me. And if you couldn’t understand me, then you couldn’t respect my fight. And if you couldn’t respect me, you couldn’t truly love me. Because you can’t love someone you don’t respect. And I was smart enough to know that, while I might’ve been what they wanted, I was certainly not what they needed.
It was a fun game. There was something to be said for the women who held my hand with every ounce of faith. Because everyone likes to feel loved – even if it was for the wrong reasons. I wasn’t immune. I squeezed their hand and allowed them to feel what I felt because that was what they earned. And while I might’ve been painfully self-aware, I refused to be an asshole. I refused to be put into a category with all the men who came before me. I didn’t allow that to happen because while I would never be able to give them what they truly desired, I was better than some emotionally unavailable mouth-breather who simply wanted to get their hands in a woman’s pants. I was the charming boyfriend. The one who played with your hair, kissed you on the forehead, and held the back of your neck while I kissed you like you were the first, the last, and the greatest. The one who came with no future, but genuinely cared about how well you slept… and who still wanted to put his hands down your pants. So, sometimes, I let the women in my bed believe they could save me. Oh sure, I gave them the disclaimer and warnings of how “you won’t fix me” blah blah blah, but I knew they didn’t hear it. And sometimes that was nice – to have someone fight for you. As misguided as it was, it made me feel loved. They saw the wounded little boy and gave it their best shot. God bless the romantic idealists.
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Finally, my book The Imperfections of James and Kate, is available for presale at the newly revamped - Deadxstop.com