I made the list of posts I’m doing for Mercury Retrograde at the beginning of the month, and I’ve been working down those prompts day by day. To me, the timing is hilarious: on the same day I have run into a bookstore owner with the very STRONG opinion I am hurting his business by making my work available in epub, my Mercury Rx post list has: Reconsider an opinion.
Don’t be lame and reconsider Michele Bachmann or something you’ve been chewing at and railing on recently or over years of time. Find something small. Check to see if you still hate beets. That show with the silly name, say.. “Buffy…” give it a full episode, maybe two to consider. I think that the “don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it” credo is an excellent one for all things that do not involve harm to yourselves and others.
For example, If you’re a classical music and book in a comfy chair person, then at least TRY: (viewing, not necessarily partcipating)
- Professional Wrestling
- Crocs (they make cuter shoes from the same material, which you can only know by looking for them)
It may lead you to a passion you didn’t expect. For instance, I adore old cars – but I think owning them is a financial death trap that is disrespectful to the car and to your loved ones, unless you drip with excess income. Museums, however, are great places to appreciate how far we’ve come. Also, I’m from Indiana. The Indie 500 is really just homage to anyone who survives crossing Meridian Avenue in Indianapolis.
If you’re more of a redneck, “I cast my circle by throwing my tire in the yard” person, try:
- Classical music – maybe not Chopin or Debussy, but Saint Saens is pretty darned interesting
- An art museum. The people who run museums may be snooty, but look closely – the people that make the really good art are a lot like you. This doesn’t lessen the value of the art.
- Reading. Pick something trashy, or go for a sword and sorcery book. It’s nothing like the crap you had to read in school, where the joy of reading was robbed by very narrow-minded, one-path analysis.
If for some reason it’s actually dangerous for you to try something outside your comfort zone, look into your opinions. Consider a recent disagreement you had, and look as closely as possible at the other person’s side. You may even want to make a chart or drawing, with the following sections:
Emotions – what the other person was feeling, and why. There’s always more than one emotion involved.
Facts – what the actual facts of the situation were, and WHAT FACTS THE OTHER PERSON KNEW. I daresay most disagreements between people of the same culture happen because one person has facts that the other person doesn’t.
Stakes – what did this person stand to gain, to lose?
Identities – what were the identities/self-images of those involved? You can break this down into: Authority (Parent, Child, fellow Adult) Responsibility (Assigned roles, usually externally, like a job or organization title) and Assumption (I want to be x type of person – badass being most popular and most poorly applied – so I’m going to emulate that type of person even though it’s not really me.)
Hold on to that sheet – it might help you later when you’re trying to figure out what the heck happened!