A few weeks ago, a woman I used to work with called Gary, brimming with snide glee and practically wetting herself in her haste to inform him that someone was hired to take my old position. This news, for some reason, was supposed to render me stark-raving mad, or shatter my heart, or some other dramatic emotional reaction she didn’t get. I’m not sure why I would care, considering (a) I despised that job with the intensity of an atomic blast, (b) I willingly walked away from that job, with no regrets, (c) I’d rather be unemployed, living in my car and munching sticks, dirt, and leaves for sustenance than go back to that job, and (d) my only thoughts for the individual unfortunate and uninformed enough to end up in that job is “Better you than me, sucker.”
She was practically giddy with the hope she would upset me, or knock me down a few pegs, and she was furious when I only laughed about it, patted her on the head, and sent her on her way. This is a woman who made it clear she does not like me and habitually trotted up to Gary, when all of us worked together, to report every supposed fault she discerned in me, yet hung out in my office like a groupie and Instant Messaged me all day long, practically begging for my attention. Her behavior puzzles me because this is how I deal with people I don’t like: I avoid them. If I am forced to be in their presence, I do not pretend to like them. Pretty simple, eh?
Her behavior, as well as the behavior of my stalkers (hi, guys! Yes, you, with the drool on your keyboard) only leads me to one conclusion, which I will get to in a moment. Here you have people claiming I am arrogant, claiming they cannot stand me, and in the case of my stalkers, claiming I am a horrible, wretched person, a corruptor of children, a serial killer in dormancy, guilty of anything and everything, who would cold-bloodedly and mercilessly slay Santa Claus, the elves, and the Tooth Fairy, laughing joyously all awhile. The only thing I haven’t been accused of yet is being a Red Wings fan. That would be going too far.
Yet they are irresistably drawn to me, aren’t they? I was the first thought of that woman I used to work with, upon finding out someone was hired for my old position; how I would feel, how I would react, how the current event would impact me. Meanwhile I was sitting at the bar in my kitchen chatting with Gary, without a shred of a thought about her on my mind, when she called. Same with my stalkers; how can they claim to abhor me, then spend hours a day following me all over the Internet desperate for a glimpse of me? “What did she say today? …*pant, pant*…What did she comment about today?” And in the same fashion, my life exists far more independently of them than theirs do of me. I am not obsessed with their every move. I do not find them as interesting as they clearly find me.
What should I make of this desperation to be near me by people who swear they can’t stand me? The traits they attack are similiar: that I am straight-forward, honest, and direct is twisted into me being arrogant, “self-aggrandizing”, and combative.
All of these (honest, direct, straight-forward), interestingly enough, are characteristics they are woefully lacking and don’t even possess the building blocks to acquire.
Therefore, my only conclusion must be this: if they would ever be honest enough with themselves to peer into the mirror without blinders and without the insulation of their lies, they will be forced to admit that their furious shrieks of “I hate her!” actually mean “I want to be like her.”
Or…maybe they just have girl crushes on me. Easy, ladies, simmer down….I’m already taken!