You could talk about how you’ve been meaning to try Soul Cycle. Bring up that Survivor is actually still pretty good. Maybe you could talk about how somebody in Brooklyn is selling cheeseburgers on ramen buns. Yes, I’m sure that any of those would make infinitely better topics of conversation than little old me. What a terrible thing it would be to talk about me on your elevator ride with Dwayne from 4A, that guy with whom you have no established topics of mutual interest. I’m sure he would much rather hear about how you were thinking about seeing Guardians of the Galaxy this week.
How you disdain talking about me: the Weather.
But you know what, Sam? Maybe I don’t want to talk about you either. Not that it isn’t fascinating that this week you’re doing a “modified cleanse.” Do you know what a modified cleanse is, Sam? That’s just drinking juice. That’s just eating like you always eat, plus some juice.
I can’t say it doesn’t make sense, though. Why would you want to talk about the weather? Aside from the fact that I’m a guaranteed topic of shared experience, of course. Oh, and that I’m the ever-changing, often violent, beautiful, and dramatic tapestry on which our lives take place.
I get it. I’m what you talk about when there’s nothing else going on, and you have so much going on. I hear this weekend you had an improv show. And what did I do this weekend? I just wasted my time rocketing hundreds of coulombs of electric charge across the burnt purple of the night sky, scorching the air with the crackling tremor that made the ancients tremble and fall to their knees. You know, same old same old.
How could you talk about me, what with everything else that is going on in the world? Between Iraq, Syria, and Gaza, there’s so much that deserves our attention. Oh, you haven’t really been following all that? I get it. There are only so many things you can keep track of, and Gordon Ramsey has like five shows.
So let’s call a truce. You won’t talk about my day, and I won’t talk about yours. You won’t talk about how I blanketed the sky in a layer of condensed vapor and then rained water upon the land, renewing the plants and the soil thereby allowing for the continuation of life itself, and I won’t talk about how you tried to get bubble tea today but the place you like closed, or maybe it’s just closed on Sundays, you’re not totally sure.
I know how important authenticity is to you, and you’re right, how can you possibly be authentic when you’re talking about me? You have to draw on your own experiences. You’re a twenty-something white guy. The world needs your perspective.
So you draw from your life, arguing on the Internet about movies you haven’t seen, and I’ll draw from mine, spending countless millennia chiseling the face of the globe out of solid rock, bending man and beast alike to my awesome might.
From now on, you do you, and I’ll do me.