Sunday, March 27, 2005

The Exigencies of Being Dex the Flake

One of the lousy things about me is my tendency to, yes, flake. My friends haven't called me on this too much, of course. They're too considerate of my feelings to rub this in my face. It doesn't affect them too much when I don't show up for something or have difficulty delivering on a promise. Well, most of the time.

My very real, very valid excuse is that I am generally mired in stuff that requires much of my time and attention. When one is part of my family, (i.e. living under the roof of one or both living parents) one is caught in a complex web of power relationships, intra-familial expectations and Christian guilt. It doesn't help that I have been battling problems with time management since the day I was born.

I compound my problem the way the rest of us humans do their faults by being unable to say "NO." In this, I am like my friend, er, Danica (not her real name). She takes upon herself projects seemingly without end mainly because she cannot stand inactivity, and because she'd rather be lost in work than remember that she has problems-- personal, work, FMA or what have you.

I am worse than Danica in this respect: I cannot help but indulge my own little messianism.

I have enormous difficulty saying "no" because a great part of my identity is woven into my personal desire to help someone, and in my ingrained cultural desire to please everybody.

I hate disappointing people: it's an ugly feeling.

Ironically, in promising all things, I get precious little done. And it doesn't help me that a big part of me is tied into what other people think of me or my work(1)-- I'm a illustrating performing artist for godssakes, I'm right up there with William Shatner, King of Ham.

I'm thinking maybe I should start saying "No" more often, even if it hurts Someone Important. If I dole out disappointment now, I won't have to deal with it later, when it's grown to monstrous proportions because my other obligations will have kept me from delivering.

(1)This has actually been instrumental in saving my life. Even in my lowest of depressive states (which, thank the Lord, I fall into less and less) I could not bring myself to the point of suicide. As long as I'm alive, there's a chance to refute the claims that I am a failure and a loser because I'm a freelancer (read: BUM)who earns less than $100 a month.


Anonymous said...

What's flake?


SylentVylent said...

why flake? aren't flakes fruitcakes? if you don't like disappointing people, then you wish to provide pleasuuure. flakes don't do that. they are weightless, the dandruff of society.