18 January 2012


"Well, yeah.... It's tricky," he said.  "We all want people to like us."

Scott Bergey
Please Love Me
mixed media on paper

Do we?

There's a general desire to NOT be disliked.  That's a familiar feeling....second grade...the look I used to see in the eyes of other kids from my privileged perch as Teacher's Pet. They didn't like me. And I was outnumbered.

But, a general desire for "people" to like me -- is more elusive. I soften my gaze and whisper into my ear "Sure, sure. Like thirst.  Or getting sleepy.  Everybody has that desire...me, too" and there it is!  Just for a second I'm convinced.

And then I take off the wig and step out of Mommy's high heels. 

It's not like that for me.  When it arises, the desire is specific.  I want "him" to like me. I want "her" attention. And I want it so bad, the taste of my saliva changes in my mouth
and something like adrenaline floods my system and a suppressed scream or growl crawls around under my skin.

Our topic tonight was "why we don't tell the truth" and, actually, I was talking about truths we don't tell/face ourselves.

We want to enter some work in the upcoming Santa Cruz Fringe Festival and he asked if I had any emerging ideas for a solo piece. I answered that lately I have a nagging feeling I'm about to call my bluff. Like there's something I've known for a long time about myself....but kept it a secret. I said my next piece will probably be about that.

But we don't know each other very well and he's mentioned a number of times that he's nervous around me, feels inadequate because of what he calls my "brilliance." I suspect his listening skills suffer as a result. 

I offered a few more words to help clear up his confusion.  

"Oh," he said.  "That's scary."

I think I know what he means but I don't feel scared at all. It's a secret I'm curious about.