Wednesday, January 03, 2007
I observed a very interesting scenario pan out this evening and realised that probably the most admirable character anybody can have is the ability to not give a shit about what anybody thinks about you. I greatly admire people who on one hand try so very hard not to conform to the norm, yet on the other hand choose not to change they way they acted because they felt nothing wrong with it. Labels: musings
I knew two guys like that in uni. They spoke funny, they acted weird, and they said things that people never liked. Yet they chose to do it not because they are ignorant to the fact that they are disliked. They did those things in spite of knowing that people hated their guts, and they chose to do those things because that is what they wanted to do. These were guys who invited themselves to parties, people who were actually nice until they said something totally whacked about something. Something inoffensive, yet totally whacked.
And because of the silly Asian culture of not liking to confront 'assholes' like this, people just bitched behind their backs. To be fair, these guys never really gave anybody a reason to tell them off to their faces. They acted liked pricks but they were still friendly with everybody. They lived by the principles that 'if I never insulted you to your face, then surely you can't return the favour'
The reason people like this are hated is because they are eccentric, and nobody really understands this eccentricity. I have always said that eccentricity is the essence of all genius, and these two guys were no exception. They were assholes, yet they had to be respected just because they were that damn good at whatever it is they had to do. And for that, they were paid the ultimate compliment - to be hated, and yet respected by others.
It is easy to be liked - you just needed to use the right words at the right time, and maybe compromise some your possibly non-existent principles along the way. And when you are well loved by everybody around, respect usually comes along with that because people tend to not be able to differentiate between the two. They will listen to you because they like you anyway. But to be hated, yet have people acknowledge that you are the best guy around is a different proposition all together. You get to revel in the fact that people have to suck up their egos just to get your help, and this makes you even more hated.
The most amazing thing is, these people know that and feel absolutely comfortable with the fact that they are not liked even though they have not given anybody any real concrete reason not to like them. They make no attempts to shed their eccentricity, they suck up all the sarcasm that is thrown in their faces, but they ultimately get to bask in all the glory.
And I tell you what, these handful of friends that they have are as loyal as any other.
however, as much as i respect anyone who is good at what they do, arses or otherwise, more of my respect is reserved for those who are good at what they do and remain humble about it.
and please. everyone wants to be liked. we're not social creatures for no reason. even dr.house was happier when someone loved him.
Then it becomes a case where he has to keep watching his back and becareful not to make mistakes because there are psychos out there who make it their life goal to destroy you over something really menial and psychos more often than not are also geniuses just on the opposite side of the spectrum.
Sure it works during university but what happens when it comes to working life and the real world, there are definately bigger assholes who are bigger geniuses, what next? who's standing with you then?
At first I was thinking along Lishun and Gavin's line of thought, coz I do know some people who are geniuses and yet assholes, and I even called a friend a dickhead the other day because of that. And then just today I got told by another friend that I was brilliant, but a bit whacked socially.
Then this post came to mind again.
It's odd to realise that I'm at the receiving end this time, and to think about it, I'm still staunchly loyal to the friend I called a dickhead, because I know I can be that honest with him, and he with me.
And when I think about the people I respect, it's actually those who dare to say what they think and take shit for it head on, something I've always been too scared to do till recently. When it comes between choosing to be a crowd pleaser and to be eccentric but honest, I think I'll sick to eccentric any old day.
Plus, I believe that assholes have a heart too. So when it comes to the real world, I still think that those who can balance brutal honesty with genuine sincerity can survive.
viva les individualism!