I'm fake with most people. Strangers, friends, cashiers-- all to varying degrees.
Yes I know that being fake with friends defeats the purpose of friendship.
Yes I know it's better to be yourself and 'if someone doesn't like you for you it's their loss!!!'.
And I'm not even afraid of being alone. I can go weeks without speaking to anyone and feel totally fine.
But the logic doesn't matter. I can't stop being a clown. The makeup is tatted on my face.
A few years ago I was needy and lonely and that's the worst catch-22 to be in.
Nobody wants to be friends with someone needy and lonely but the needy and lonely person needs friends.
So you have to pretend to be someone people would like.
Hide your sadness. Never talk about your feelings, always act optimistic.
But people can still tell. The way you hunch over the table, solemnly picking at your green beans, and your mechanical smile, lips peeling apart to reveal a straight block of teeth 😬, eyes fixed in place-- the truth leaks out.
You can't say, "WOW WHAT A BEAUTIFUL DAY I CAN'T WAIT TO GO TO CLASS" through a frown and watery eyes no one will believe you.
Learn to censor the body.
It's hard, but a little goes a long way. Most people are less perceptive than you'd think. You just need to fool some of the people all of the time. Those who see through your facade but are either too kind or too indifferent to speak on it, those who are clowns themselves and are too busy performing their own routine to notice you, and those solipsists who are just happy to have another NPC side character around to spice things up-- these are the easiest targets.
You'll start to get some positive feedback. People will see you as a "chill dude".
"Chill", meaning, "you're so expertly monitoring and surpressing your behavior you never let yourself say anything weird or disagreeable". "Chill".
You continue to calculate your speech, only saying things that are funny, light-hearted, comforting, and harmonizing.
Actually, you're kind of a martyr, right? Sacrificing personal expression for the sake of making others feel good? Good on you.
Now the mind feels like it's figured it all out.
We've done it boys. We're getting laid. The ascetics were right-- repression really does lead to happiness. Let's hit a water fast.
And slowly the behavior permeates the subconscious and the clown mask is super glued to your face. Like glasses, you start to forget you're wearing it.
One day alone in your room you start to sing along to your favorite song but you find yourself saying the lyrics in a mathematical monotone. You dry, cracking getup tugging at your head.
"Alright, time for a litle air. I'm alone in my room who's gonna see me."
You try to peel the mask off but it tugs so painfully at your skin that you say Eh, I'll just leave it on, quit spotify and fall asleep.
But that's ok! Who needs singing! Because look at all these friends you have!
Don't fuck it up!
part two soon