Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.
Day Two: Nine things about yourself.
Day Three: Eight ways to win your heart.
Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.
Day Five: Six things you wish you’d never done.
Day Six: Five people who mean a lot (in no order whatsoever)
Day Seven: Four turn offs.
Day Eight: Three turn ons.
Day Nine: Two images that describe your life right now, and why.
Day Ten: One confession.
Day Ten: One confession.
It's called a parliament or a storytelling of rooks. The reason is because the birds will land with one in the center. After a while, one of two things will happen. Either the birds will all fly off, or they will attack the one in the center and kill him.
This has a social analog with humanity. When we speak our minds, we stand in the center of a parliament of rooks. What will happen to us? Will we say the right things and everyone moves on? Or are we just counting down the time until the end? This concern isn't limited to the Internet. It happens everywhere, everyday, every time we say something. What do we talk about? What do we reveal about ourselves? How much is too much? What isn't enough? How do we get the reaction and understanding that we want?
This is where the fear of public speaking comes from. When you speak your mind on anything, whether just something you like or something you believe, you are putting yourself out there, risking rejection, anger, or the worst fate of all, complete and utter apathy, the judgment of other people that ultimately you are not worth anything, not even the time to try and teach the right things to. That every time they see you, they will not see the person you are but the opinions that they don't like.
To be yourself is to risk losing human interaction. Man, by his very nature, is a social creature. But especially in this era of harshly divided opinion, where outrage and how much you can damage those who disagree with you have become the primary considerations, the chances of being ostracized for following your own lead, even if that own lead is to simply respect others instead of something truly offensive, are astonishing.
I'm not sure what compels me to write the things that I do. My opinion is simply my own opinion. Opinion doesn't change the world, people do. I sometimes think that, if I didn't have this blog, I'd probably go crazy. This blog helps me organize my thoughts and try to make sense of a world that spins further and further out of control every day. It gives me a way to express my emotions, from outrage to compassion to mockery, in regards to humanity. But it's not enough that I do it. Otherwise, I could simply write a journal and hide it away in my sock drawer, where I would never risk anyone else reading it. I don't just want to organize my thoughts, I want to express them. I want to interact with other people, learn things I might be overlooking, keeping my excesses in check, and see if what I have concluded is actually feasible. To do that, I risk offending people and being cast aside. There are some posts where I finish typing and just stare at the screen for a moment, wondering if I really should hit the "post" button. Sometimes, I have simply hit the back button and let my words vanish into the ether. But more often, I do hit that button and hope for the best, that those rooks will fly away and I'll still be around to watch them.
My confession is this: I honestly believe writing this blog is the bravest thing I have ever done. I honestly believe expressing your heartfelt opinion is the bravest thing anyone can do. It's the ultimate risk, with as many possible outcomes as there are people in the world. And just taking that step, being willing to face whatever may come, is a beautiful thing and a great accomplishment. Thank you for joining me on this ride.