The more I grow, the more I see. And maybe that’s speaking from my bartender sobriety, serving up drinks to slurred-speech individuals who try so very hard to sound intelligible.
Look at you, with your eyes and your teeth and your face.
No, really, that’s a compliment in bar speak. This is my job, people. This is what I do. Every once in a while, though, I’ll lock eyes with someone who’s thinking the same thought as me–“muddle some glass with that bitters and we’ll go down together, eh?”
That was a genuinely real conversation I had the other night with a patron, by the way. After the eighth Chuck Barry song played on the jukebox, I was reading up on the Hale-Bopp Comet and together we were contemplating The Great Perhaps. He got to leave, though, and I had to stay and clean up the half-full bottles of PBR and roll my eyes at the hipsters who just can’t seem to make the cut. (Why crap beer, anyway? Branch out into the beautiful realm of all that is whiskey and gin. I mean, come on. And take a shower!)
As I was saying, though, before my horrible attention span got the best of me, the more I grow, the more I see. The more I see, the more I wish I could go back to the ignorant naivety of fifteen-years-old. I had the spectacular dream of joining the Peace Corps where I would then proceed to “save the world.” I truly believed that I could, single-handedly, end world hunger. Laugh away, people, but it was a beautiful dream.
Everywhere I seem to look lately, I have to search and search for the good. There’s so much anger and hatred and unfairness in the world right now, and I’m hearing every single side of it. I’m right in the thick of some of the most opinionated people you’ll ever meet, and trying to hang onto my own beliefs (and intelligence in a sea of stupidity) and be heard–or at least just to remain standing without being trampled to dust–is tough.
What do you do when there’s no way to do it? When what needs to be said and done is blocked by a triple-reinforced steel barrier with barbed wire and a retinal scanner?
I’ll tell you what you do.
Everything. And nothing. But it’s the nothing that is the everything.
“Blah blah blah controversial subject from a controversial person blah blah blah, WHAT DO YOU THINK, MOLLY?”
And they turn and they look and they expect me to answer them and be on their side, and so I say nothing for a while. I do this wide-eyed thing where I stare and let them talk and vent and get their extremely difficult problems that have nothing to do with them at all out of their system.
And then I say, “Wow, that’s really hard on you.”
Wait for it…1…2…
“Well, I mean…” and the incessant ranting continues with steam engine force as I nod and giggle on the inside. What an extremely riveting conversation, Sir.
Okay, it’s gasoline on the fire, but it’s entertaining. No one ever picks up on it, though, because it’s so subtle. The idea that little Ms. Molly is a shit starter never seems to cross their mind. 😉
It’s the ignorance that’s the problem, though. Honestly, you would think that would be the opposite. Ignorance is bliss, right? What you don’t know won’t hurt you, or something? But that’s just not the case. What they don’t know is that they don’t know. And if they don’t know that they don’t know, then how do they know that what they’re saying is ridiculously stupid? Still with me?
True story–I told someone in conversation that I plan on going back to school. “For what?” He asked. “Probably for English,” I replied. And I am not even kidding, he was one hundred percent serious, “But you already speak English.”