I have lost count of the number of conversations I have had face-to-face, via telephone, text messaging, email even, where people automatically think they know your whole story. No one knows the full story about anyone. Hell, I don’t even know my full-story because there are so many other factors that involve my being on the The Planet in the first place. As I keep on telling people, Life is not that simple, nor is it plain black and white either. But that makes no difference to many people. They feel they have to justify their way of thinking and mentality, especially when their perceptions of certain things are challenged. It is then that one sees the true nature of people and how they will pass or attempt to pass on their insecurities on to you and make one feel bad and guilty, when you have no need to be so in the first place.
Had an interesting telephone conversation yesterday afternoon with a friend about my career in Theatre. With a few exceptions, she was the only one who truly understood why I took the chances I did for no initial financial gain. Simply put, I love to act and would do most anything to do just that. An opportunity came up, I took it as a way of keeping my hand in and upping my game. I stayed with it as long as I could but in the end it was no longer sustainable. Plus, I wasn’t really appreciated. I then looked at Tweet Tunnel that displays old Tweets. I looked at the Old Tweets of someone who spent the best part of the Summer putting me down. Looking at those old tweets of theirs, told me that they hadn’t a clue as to what I was about and if they lived a thousand years they would have no idea why an artist does what they do, despite my explaining to them.
Before you condemn a man to the gallows, you have to walk a mile in that man’s shoes. In their case I can understand what a person goes through when they are a victim of spousal abuse, letting go of their child and not seeing that child again and how that child now an adult and parent wants nothing to do with them. Their child doesn’t want to know the other side of the story. There are many other factors to this person’s life but I don’t need to walk a mile in their shoes. It only takes a leap of my imagination to put myself in their place to appreciate at least what they went through. Something actors do anyway. They put themselves in places they have never been nor would dare to go in their everyday lives.
Nothing is ever simple in anyone’s life but it does amaze me how people see things in simple black and white terms, when the reality is far from black and white. Even when their own lives, past and experiences are far from being black and white.
It is strange how someone can understand one’s experiences so well that they articulate it better than you ever could. And on another, someone else is so small-minded, blinded by anger and rage that they will turn a good but difficult struggle, a noble struggle into something negative, pathetic even.
No one is ever interested in an artist until they are successful. Only then does the story of struggle, poverty, depression and endurance on that road to success become interesting. I am no longer surprised that people I have known for many years have little if any interest in what I am doing and see me a failure. This is nothing new of course but while you are on that road, that journey, you get to know who your friends are. And there is nothing like failure, perceived or otherwise to let you know where you stand with people.
To be honest, I wouldn’t have it any other way.