Am I a misanthrope?
After having taken a quick break and run into my roommates and their guest, I’d have to say the answer is a resounding… maybe. Becoming a misanthrope is quite a commitment for someone my age. I haven’t seen them in a week, so I expect all their little quirks to be endearing. And yet… they seem fake and shallow, and I am now actively resenting my dear roomie’s singing as it echoes out of the bathroom. He came home singing too — it’s his way of introducing himself, of announcing his arrival. I should find this sweet, or at minimum, interesting. But, alas, it’s only tiresome.
Journalists are supposed to be people who love people. In my mind, though, a fundamental assumption of journalism is rather misanthropic: that people are ignorant. That they must be formally educated every single day, extra on Sundays, their day of rest and worship, if our society is to function.
I’ve found there to be a culture of resentment in the offices of my magazine. That “people” don’t care about one issue or another is repeated several times throughout the day, especially during pitch meetings. Not “some people” or “most people” but “people” — everyone outside the walls of this building, and many some on the inside, too.
So I guess I’m cut out for the job.
I was a loner in high school, too, but I hated myself then, especially that part of myself. So I would force myself to go to every function, to talk incessantly, to try to meet people on the street and become their instant friends. I was permanently self-conscious and uncomfortable, but I was happy.
Now I’m much more comfortable with myself. I would say that maybe I even know myself. And I have become comfortable enough with my anti-social tendencies to have stopped trying to fix them. Which means at every social setting I fall or am dragged into — I would never seek one out myself — I sadly cannot force myself to force myself to participate. I merely maintain the appearance that I’m paying attention by analyzing the features of my “conversation partners’” faces, staring at them so hard they become abstract and somewhat fluid. I imagine them in suburbia standing over a grill, back to their perfect spouse and perfect car, and crying.
It’s a little bit of revenge for the torture of their conversation.