Tennis and melodrama

January 27, 2012

I was thinking about a friend of mine who loves tennis and who also sees things very dramatically.  She tells a good story about the politics at her office.  Listening to her is like being on an emotional roller coaster, and there are good guys  and cowboys and evil people lurking in the shadows populating the tales.  She also serves you wine and exotic cheeses while you listen.

I am thinking about her because I am encountering yet another iteration of the pattern in which I turn out to have a rarer situation than someone is surmising and hence that someone is giving me inapt advice.  My sense is that this occurs when I am being confused with someone else or when the would-be listener is just generally calibrated for someone who is not me.

It also happens, I’m beginning to think, when I try unsuccessfully to translate a spiritual issue into the language that people who don’t perceive things in that way might understand — I am suspecting that what I say sounds distorted, like trying to collapse three dimensions into two, to translate poetry into prose, to speak a melody.  I think the listener may attribute the oddness of what I’m saying to me and not to the situation I am describing or to the effects of translation.

Maybe the resolution is for me to learn to tolerate better being thought to exaggerate or to be a little odd.  I can also try to learn to accept more graciously people’s other sorts of reactions that I don’t find helpful.


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