Seriously, I Don’t Want to Dance
Why is this world polluted with people who are determined to make me dance? Loud, pushy, abrasive, overbearing, manipulative overlords of what is or is not judged to be enjoyable. People who won’t take no for an answer. People who believe they better grasp what’s in my brain than I do.
What I say: I don’t want to dance.
What they hear: I pretend I don’t want to dance, but secretly, it’s my deepest yearning. If not for debilitating fear and self-loathing, I’d be out on the dance floor right now, living the dream.
What I say: seriously, I don’t want to dance.
What they hear: if only there were some loud, pushy, abrasive, overbearing, manipulative overlord of what is or is not judged to be enjoyable, to goad and badger me into doing what I’ve secretly always wanted to do anyway.
What I say: get away from me, you drooling half-wit.
What they hear: grab my arm like a slack-jawed oaf and physically drag me onto the dance floor.
I am not responsible for anything that happens from that moment forward. I am confident the person who coined the phrase “justifiable homicide” was just some poor fellow who earnestly didn’t want to dance.
Note: I’m sure when his jaw is no longer wired shut, the person described in the scenario above will apologize to me.
Let’s make one thing clear: just because you like a certain thing, it doesn’t follow that every other human should also like that thing. Loads of different people like loads of different things.
Jeffrey Dahmer quite enjoyed killing people, hacking them up, eating them, and stowing the leftovers in his freezer. I can write with a relative degree of certainty; most human beings wouldn’t much care for that.
I have never once thought to myself: killing people, hacking them up, eating them, and stowing the leftovers in my freezer, seems like a horrific and frankly evil thing to do…but Jeffrey Dahmer thought it was a lovely thing to do. Perhaps I’m looking at this all backward. I’ve got plenty of room in my freezer, and there are several acquaintances in my sphere of influence I could readily live without (mostly the few who try to make me dance).
If only the local learning annex offered a course on beginner cannibalism. It’s all scrapbooking this and scrapbooking that, down at that place.
And I don’t need to be the center of attention to enjoy myself–in fact, it’s preferable not to be.
Just because I’m not standing on a chair, singing Love Shack at the top of my lungs, juggling shot glasses while I wildly thrust my hips into the air in a suggestive manner, doesn’t mean I’m not enjoying myself.
I don’t see life through the same self-absorbed prism as you.
You imagine I’m thinking: if only I could summon the courage, that would be me on that chair.
When I’m really thinking: if only I could summon the courage, I would kick that chair from under that jackass’s feet. That would make me smile.
Also, don’t tell me to smile.
I smile plenty.
I smile when it’s appropriate.
I smile when I’m happy or when something good happens.
I smile when a jackass falls from his chair and shot glasses cascade across his face.
Note: sometimes, I summon the courage.
People who go around smiling for no apparent reason are mental. I am not mental (fingers crossed).
Being a naturally quiet person or an introvert is not a problem that needs to be fixed–just leave me be.