Tuesday, January 03, 2006

the if game

I had a thought today-- as I sat down to eat my lunch, I realized that I completely forgot to bring any kind of utensil with me. So how did I eat my salad?

I used two unsharpened pencils as chopsticks.

"Ingenious!", that's what I thought. I then thought, "ingenious, ingenuity, ingenuous, ingenue--". And I stopped dead.

I am not an ingenue. In fact, I may well never have been an ingenue at any point in my life.

I don't think there are many people who would describe me as naive, sweet, guileless or innocent. I don't even think people who know me very very well, or are related to me, would use those terms. Its not like I'm some kind of boozehound Slutty McSlutterson, wandering from bar to bar giving out hand jobs for martinis-- I'm just not naive, sweet, guileless or innocent.

I like to use words like plain-spoken, frank, forthright, or independent, but its true that others have employed brutal, acerbic, blunt, or mean when speaking of me.

Actually, mean is used quite a bit.

I think part of the problem is, when I think mean, I think cruel-- but others, when they use it, are saying not nice.

And I am, most definitely, not nice. If I were nice, what would my life be like? If I were nice, who would I be?!

But, it turns out that ingenue is derived from the French blah blah blah while ingenious is actually Middle English for "The Center of the Universe".*

Identity crisis averted.

*That translation was in a book. An old book. An old, important, very real, very true book that is out of print. Yes, I have the only copy of it in existence. No, you can't look at it.