What Hell Hath Man Wrought?

I previously discussed my less-than-fruitful attempt at turning my dating process into a social experiment.  It was one of those classic tales, boy finds girl on Internet, boy writes girl on Internet, girl writes back an invective filled message.  It is a tale as old as the hills themselves.  Today I present the follow-up to that tale.  A Sean Strikes Back, sort of post.

I have many crazy beliefs and have written about them previously. One of my crazy beliefs is nothing happens out of a vaccuum.  Every action is a reaction to something.

No one responds with hostility for no reason.  Okay, insane people do, but really, that is most likely not the case. Consider instead those moments in your life when you told someone off. Maybe you never have.  Maybe you never unleashed the full fury of yourself upon another person.  If that is the case, I stand in awe of you.   For those of us who did so, we did it knowing we were right to do so.  We opened up that can of ‘whoop-ass’ in order to right a wrong, to bring justice to our lives.  Maybe we have a Star Trek quote running on loop in our heads:

We’ve made too many compromises already, too many retreats. They invade our space, and we fall back. They assimilate entire worlds, and we fall back. Not again. The line must be drawn here! This far, and no further! And I will make them pay for what they’ve done!

Is it possible, one of those time, a completely innocent person received the full frontal assault of your wrath?  I know, I know what I am saying is crazy. You and I would never make such a mistake.  We are obviously clear headed individuals who truly knows the target of our anger deserves our anger. We also know not everyone is quite as wise as us. I mean there are people who clearly do things to deserve wrath so it is possible there are people out there who pull that trigger on the innocent without realizing the innocence of the recipient.

To call that woman who responded to me in a spiteful way derogatory names is to assume that someone she recently dealt with didn’t actually deserve the blast of bile and I just happened to step on a landmine leftover from that battle.  Instead of dwelling on that moment of discomfort for me, hopefully catharsis for her, I want to examine this world man has created.  I am not showing a gender bias in my writing, I am truly reflecting upon the male human and the social realm he has constructed which has made it so some women feel a need to unload a double-barrel shotgun of anger at men who contact them or more often just ignore messages from men contacting them.

I do not mean to generalize; I am speaking of the handful of bad apples who spoil the whole barrel. I do now just realize that I’ve presented images of shotguns and apple barrels and this here post is turning into a downright folksy sort of thing.  My language is about to get a lot less folksy so I hope you weren’t lured this far under false pretense.  Men are dicks and assholes. Again, not all men, not even most, but there are more than few who leave a wide swath of emotional destruction in their wake.

Consider the belligerence many women suffer when they do respond negatively to a man who contacted them in the online dating world.  Saying she isn’t interested seems to be an opening for some men to respond with snide remarks ultimately stemming for a wounded ego but still hurtful and completely unnecessary.

Men are crude.  Once again, remember, not talking about all men, but a handful hurting the image of men everywhere. Men engage in lewd behavior hoping for a response. They try to incite some emotional reaction to fulfill some need.  I am not a psychologist but I’m willing to speculate wildly that these type of men just need attention, good or bad. They aren’t looking for dates, love, or even sex. Just a few moments of heated back and forth, not even sexy back and forth, just some name calling and some bit of passion because their lives are boring and routine.  They need to stir the pot.

Men are pathetic. Uh uh uh… not you and not me, I assure you. Just that special little group over there ruining it for the rest of us. See, there is a type of man who turns a request for a date into a request for therapy.  “Would you like to go out?” “No thanks.” “Oh my god, what is wrong with me, why don’t you like me?”  Ohh… well okay, maybe this doesn’t apply to you but I just saw a bit of myself in that, though I don’t turn it onto the woman I’ve asked out.  At least I don’t think I do.  At least not when I’m sober.   Why would a woman respond negatively to a guy asking her out if it is just going to end up with message after message of him essentially begging her to feed his ego.

I complained that trying to find a date that I feel compatibility with was a difficult task.  On the flipside of that, I don’t have to worry every message I receive is going to end up with belligerence, lewdness, or whining.  I’m not sure which ‘side’ of the equation has it better.  I know there are days I wish I had attention coming to me, but then it runs into the other conundrum, what if it is attention from the wrong people?  Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.  What is worse? Dying of thirst in the desert or on a the ocean?

Men, this is the world we’ve created. Our game playing, our lack of decisiveness, our ‘keeping out options open’, our score keeping has created a world where open and free communication needs to be replaced with cloak and dagger, smoke and mirror crap.

Men and women need to approach love with an open heart. No matter how many times we get hurt, no matter how many times love is snatched away from us at the last minute, each new person we bring into our lives is a brand new, starting from zero, opportunity to find love. We cannot hold the new person accountable for the sins of the old person.  We cannot expect them to be their own person and fill the deficit left behind from previous relationships. Be open, be honest, and if someone opens up a can of ‘whoop-ass’ on you, know that it probably has very little to do with you and a lot to do with the journey that person has been on.  You can choose to respond with defiance and defensiveness or understanding and care.  The most docile creature will attack when hurt and backed in the corner.

Wow, this entire post has been a metaphor roller coaster ride.   We’ve come back into the station. Tip your servers.

Published by Sean D. Francis

Sean D. Francis is a technologist, writer, and geek. He podcasts, makes video, and dabbles in all the geeky genres including horror, sci-fi, and fantasy.

8 replies on “What Hell Hath Man Wrought?”

  1. I wonder if there’s isn’t a third option, in a sense – treat it as an event of no significance. You’ll never know why that person reacted the way she did. Maybe she’s just mean, maybe she had a bad day, maybe she’s been victim to a strong of atrocities. You’ll never know, but it still wasn’t justified, and it doesn’t make you any worse a person than you were the day before.

    1. Who am I to say it wasn’t justified? That’s my point. This kind of behavior stems from something.  I may not have been the right target for the behavior, but most likely she was pushed to this by the behavior of the men who had been contacting her. Why not give her the benefit of the doubt? Why not assume she is a good person pushed to bad behavior? I’m misanthropic enough that I don’t need to start assuming negatives about people when I already know enough negatives regarding the human condition to make me fairly disgusted with our species. 

      Huh, I think I have the tact I’m taking on today’s #trust30 challenge.

      1. I mean it wasn’t justified in the sense of you personally deserving it. My broader point, though, is why give the event any power at all? As soon as you start delving into the causality of something you don’t have the facts about (and probably never will), you’ll inevitably end up blaming either her or yourself, or a little of both. It’s not worth the emotional turmoil. Her response is no reflection on your in this case, and doesn’t impact your future successes unless you let it get into your head.

      2. Everything has meaning or else nothing has meaning. Every event in my life has an affect on me. Pretending it doesn’t won’t help me. Attempting to learn something from it might.  In these terms though, realize this happened a couple weeks ago and emotionally I’ve moved on.  This isn’t a livejournal ‘my current crisis’ sort of thing, this is my musing on a past event and trying to derive a lesson from it.  I could NOT try to derive a lesson but then I’d have nothing to write about.  

        I got gum on my shoe the other day.  Harder to come up with a mildly interesting lesson from that. So I’ll stick to relationship disasters, creativity, social analysis, and flights of whimsy.

      3. If everything has meaning, then the gum on your shoe has meaning. You’ve decided that it’s insignificant, and unless you live in a DaVinci Code world where everything is a symbol, that’s a reasonable choice. Why are the actions of one woman worth castigating yourself over? Is there value in depriving others of the power to decide how you feel at any given moment, and assuming that power for yourself? All actions do not have equal effects, and we get to choose how we deal with the inputs we get. It’s our only real power, but it can have immense consequences.

      4. The gum on my shoe does have meaning. But blog posts about littering and such have limited appeal while blog posts regarding analyzing relationships and trying to draw out greater meaning from those interactions have a broader appeal. 

      5. They are mutually exclusive?  The soul-searching doubt ridden stuff is slated for a personal diary and not for public consumption.  The events, woe-filled encounters, personal insights from my life experiences that I think others might be interested in reading about are for the blog and public consumption. 

        So in my diary I rant about people throwing gum on the sidewalk and muse about the Indonesian law about caning people who do such things, but the blog gets the benefit of this type of stuff, where I take more universal and entertaining events and try to squeeze meaning out of them.  In this particular case, I try to take the fact that one person had what I think we agreed was a less than civil, illogical reaction and reflect how a person might become this way. 

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