The Domain of Steven Pinnacle of Paperless Perfection

22Feb/052

No, not guardian force…

They're different. Undeniably different. They're the ones I can pick out in a crowd, the ones I care deepest for, and the ones that I don't mind embracing again and again. If I'm so close to them, then naturally I should be my truest to them. I should feel most comfortable around them, and I should know them better than anyone else. Yet on both counts, it's oddly only half-true.

There are four main modes of behavior that I adopt: passive, condescending (and often sarcastic), courteous, and debauched. There will always be bursts of each, but I tend to stick to one for the most part when I interact with a person. I initially start passive, settle into one of them when I finish casting down judgement on a person, and stick to that behavior until I learn something new about the person. The most common changes are because of a sarcastic or debauched joke I make that is responded to favorably, and I switch to meet them with a courteous or debauched manner.

Yet I've noticed that all of them have been met with the courteous attitude. Why not a debauched attitude? I certainly have enough fun in it, and most (all?) of my good friends are met with the debauched attitude. Why should they be any different?

It's not like I'm holding myself back with them. When I'm with people, thoughts come to mind according to the behavior I've adopted with them. Next to a person that I act condescending to, negative thoughts come to mind. With a person I act debauched to, debauched things come to mind. Everything feels natural; when I'm courteous, I simply don't see things the same way I do when I'm acting debauched. In the moment, I have just as much fun either way.

Everything's pointing towards the conclusion that I'm some ultra-adaptable person. Perhaps I'm not inherently perverted and debauched, and that it simply seemed like a good route at the time, so I picked it up. When I was in middle school, rap was the most prevalent kind of music, so I took a small liking to it. When I went to Stuyvesant, where rap wasn't as popular, my interest in it died out.

Instead, I'm a reflection of the people I'm around. Some unconscious effort on my part to be liked? Considering that to them I had been courteous, I wouldn't be surprised. I can only count one, perhaps two, who I've been attracted to that didn't mind me being debauched. And they were pretty debauched themselves. So I guess I do match the person I'm with.

Yet it seems almost taboo to cross over and become debauched with them. It's almost like they're on a different level with me, such that I feel protective towards them, which requires the courteous attitude. What would happen if I got that close to a debauched? Hopefully my current situation will never end, but it'd be interesting to see how the debauched relationship would change. A mix of the two, I'd presume.

Yet even more odd than my tendency to change according to the people I'm around (kinda like a behavior chameleon?) is my memory loss. It's the strangest thing, even stranger than me being a good goalie. But I can't recall their faces.

I have no idea why. I've spent more intimate time with them than anyone else, and I'm not so shy as to constantly avert my gaze. If the concept behind studying notes is well-founded, I should know their faces inside and out (okay, that's a little gross). But I don't. Despite seeing their faces day after day, I don't remember them. It's frustrating to no end, kinda like when you cram for a test only to find that you've blanked out on everything. You desperately try to recall the information, because it's vital to you not getting whipped when the test grade comes back, but you just can't remember anything.

But sometimes you'll remember a bit of what you studied the night before the test. When that memory comes back, you're overjoyed that you're not going to be beaten within an inch of your life. That warm, fuzzy feeling when I finally recall her face almost makes up for the frustration, like meeting up with her after being away from them almost makes up for the heartache. It's a feeling of security and love, like now that she's back, everything will be okay.

And I'm beginning to think that it's only with the person who remains past the line. I'm recalling images of her more easily every day, images I would've struggled to find when I was with her. It's a bit counter-intuitive, because she's not the person I'd prefer to occupy my thoughts, but that's exactly what's happening.

I'm just a field day for psychologists specializing in the subconscious, aren't I?

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  1. I think that everyone’s at least partly a reflection of the people they’re around, whether it’s friends or crazy neighbors, or stuffy parents that’ve sheltered you all your life. We’ve all been influenced by our surroundings, and it affects us as we grow up.

    I don’t think your tendency to change with your surroundings is anything unusual, because everyone does it to some extent. Unless you go out of your way to make sure you’re behaving perfectly with every person you’re speaking to….

    I’m curious about your little rap interest though. 😛 It seems as if you listened to it simply because it was there, but… did you just take an interest in it to follow the crowd, or did you actually enjoy the music? Like I said, I’m curious…

  2. Hm, reading this I am reminded again of who the smarter one in our friendship is (you). I cannot truthfully admit to being able to understand all of it due not only to your depth but also your vagueness (which you’d think I’d be used to be this point, but that is neither here nor there). We’re all a little chameleon like I think but with you … I can picture it being more. Of course I’ve never actually seen you, hm, I do I put this? Like in a “natural environment” or rather any environment not CTY or CTY-related (e.g. reunion). Therefore my perceptions of Steven Li, Amazing Human Chameleon are mostly fictionalized.

    With that last bit about forgetting faces, however, I can most definitely relate. Too often during the summer I will bolt up in bed trying desperately to recall my best friend’s face and feeling unable to for agonizing minutes. The conclusion I have reached is that a. I need to take more pictures and b. staring is okay if you’re memory is as shit as mine (or yours).


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