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Outside my studio is a sinkhole, and in the bottom of it lie the bones and divinations of the soothsayers, diva's, drama queens, and sex guru's, who want to educate me on "what life is all about". It's a deep hole, and I planned it like that.
The nature of any communication I have with the human race is, for me, fairly simple. I can say whatever I want if I am willing to accept the consequences. I might be acknowledged, and responded to, I might be ignored or banned, I might get hit in the face. I am always conscious of these consequences when I put out information, and it works in both directions.
What is more important to me however is what I hear, read, and see on a daily basis, and how carefully I monitor what it is I internalize. I can't unsee, or unhear, or unread something, but I can evaluate how much weight I am ready to give it, and how much space it is allowed to occupy in my mind, in my blog, or on my couch.
For a long time I thought I had some sort of automatic "spam filter" that would weed out bad information, and stick it in some mental recycle bin to be later autopurged. I find that for me that is not the case. It all goes into the informational cauldron, and unless it is specifically labled as "bullshit", gets incorporated simply as information and may pop out any place. That's not a good thing.
Other people have freedom of speech, but they are not entitled to live rent free in my head, or get on the "this is important" list. I have to be my own spam filter. I have a say in what I think about and what I actively blow off, but I can't just let information go on by and think that it somehow disappears.
Any time I find myself with a strongly held belief or conviction, the first thing I ask myself is "why"? Why do I believe that? Why am I so certain I am right? Does the feeling come from a reasoned, examined, set of circumstances, or is it just a reflex that caused some mindless, arrogant, ego monster to jump up from the cauldron and proclaim how right he is.
I do not feel the need to be some sort of weird "Crusader Rabbit," who runs around pointing a finger and screaming, "bullshit! That's bullshit!", but neither am I required to take bullshit that gets thrown at me and give it careful and weighty consideration. I am responsible to triage and manage what goes into my head. I make the decsions on what is bullshit and what is worthy of consideration to get added to the information pool out of which I make my life choices. I am not required to let anybody swim in the pool just because they show up. Ultimately, if I choose wrong I will suffer for it, but I will take that risk.
Doesn't sound fair. Well, around here the fair is in August, and I'll meet you by the goat pen. Until then feel free to read me or block me or bite my wrinkled hoosier butt. We all have choices.