People-watching 101


There are some people who, purely by the virtue of restraint, make themselves into a kind of elusive treasure. They do not always do it deliberately. Being pleasant/desirable does not put upon you an obligation of distributing yourself socially; just as having a sweet voice does not (must not) oblige you to sing; or an instinctive understanding of your academic subject compel you to score high marks.

These people approach the infinite by simply being intangible—since they refused to participate in your plan for them, you have no idea of knowing what would happen if they did. Anything could happen, but you’ll never know, so you cannot eliminate any of the possibilities. You cannot quite quantify (measure, classify, box) the person in question. There’s that precious little bit about them that will always evade you. Something like that should be illegal, right? But it is completely justified, and I must vouch for that too.

Because there were times I have been one of these people. At other times, I have been irresistibly attracted to them. Maybe these are flip sides of the same personality. (Maybe someday I will know that for sure.)


Usually, it’s not the sad people who do drugs, it’s the happy people who do. If you have an immediate problem in life, you work towards setting it all right—you keep yourself alert. You rant/rail or demolish it quietly and calculatingly, but you do not do drugs, because even if you did, in all likeliness you’d end up getting a bad trip.  But if everything’s reasonably fine in your life—you have the job you wanted, your boy/girlfriend is behaving well, your parents and friends add a gentle glow to the general picture of serenity and perfection—what do you do occasionally to add some uncertainty and fun into the mix? That’s right.

You do it to bide time, to break the monotony of the general having-nothing-to-do, of not being able to get away and experience more exciting things physically, to let yourself be able to endure the same perfect day over and over again. Doing drugs does not have any necessity, meaning, worth, but it’s not as if not-doing drugs has any of those things either. Most opinions and/or states of mind don’t. Even perfection stops being enough once it’s been long enough. If that isn’t a #firstworldproblem, I don’t know what is.

But it also explains why I never quite got into that habit.

2 thoughts on “People-watching 101”

  1. For the first category, as you say – there have been times when I’ve been one of these people. At others, I’ve simply been jealous of them.

Express. Engage. Etcetera.

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