Tuesday, November 28, 2006

I really wish I could think of a good title for this post.

I love to write. Call me selfish, but most of what I write is for me. If I can get my thoughts on paper (or computer screen as the case may be), I can either organize them and hopefully make some sense of it all or eliminate them, thus freeing my mind from the trivial task of analyzing over nothingness. (A true analytical will appreciate that last line. The rest of you are free to roll your eyes).

All that to say: this post is not for me. It is for you, my reader; an audience which I have come to believe is rapidly diminishing. As much as that stabs at my pride, I thank you, the faithful few, who remain.

While people accuse me of being quiet, of having nothing to say, of being….horror of all horrors…amiable! I am merely observing. These are a few of my observations. I have removed all names because, well—it might be you.

People-observing ranks rather high on my list of preferred entertainments. It doesn’t get old. People are unpredictable (and predictable). People are different (and the same). The frustration with cliques is that their members only associate with their own kind. The fascination with diversity then is isolated not so much to those who observe the differences, but those who can appreciate them.

There are numbers of opposing parallels that all people posses which are simply too self-explanatory for me to expound on. For example, there is the introvert and the extrovert, the serious and the giddy, the perfectionist and the haphazardist. The list goes on. But a more intriguing pair is the profounder and the shallower. Please understand that none of these descriptions are meant to question anyone's intelligence, depth, sincerity, or motive. They are merely my observations, and thus observed through my biased perspective.

Profounders may be identified by a facial expression, but are usually identified when they speak. Few people say exactly what they mean to say, exactly when they mean to say it, exactly in the way they would say it. If they did, conversation would be dull. Instead, we have a lovely contrast of communicators. There are the few that don’t care what they say as long as they are noted for saying it. There are those who say only what everyone wants them to say. There are others who say exactly what everyone does not want them to say, which oddly is precisely what they do want in a round about way. (Yes, I know that nothing can be precise and round about at the same time. That is why I put them both in the same sentence). There are those who know they are profound and flaunt it, those who wish they were profound and try to force it, those who do not know they are profound but accidentally do it, and those who know they are profound but try to hide it in order that others might think they are more profound by hiding how profound they profoundly are.

Shallowers have a depth all their own. They are a misunderstood people, accused of being void of original thought, of being unable to think for themselves. Though many of them are highly intelligent (and many Profounders for that matter are not), they are often cast aside as intellectually unworthy. Profounders will speak of the trivial in an intellectual way. Shallowers speak of the trivial as trivially as it actually is. But Shallowers have a perspective that is unclouded by abstract logic. They have a solid understanding of what is real and what actually matters.

By the way, Shallowers are scared to death of Profounders. And though they would never call it fear, Profounders do not know the first thing to do with the Shallowers. You will seldom see these two groups mingle. But should you find yourself in the dininghall sitting at a table with a large group of Shallowers (if you are a Profounder) or Profounders (if you are a Shallower), you will need to know the difference so that you can properly appreciate the opposite group. Profounder comunication is based on content. WHAT is said is important. You can't blank out and still be part of the conversation. Shallower communication is based on the manner in which the content is expressed. It's not WHAT is said, but HOW it is said. I am convinced that a Shallower conversation can take place entirely without words. Grunts combined with expression are sufficient to have the entire table rolling with laughter.

So, may you all break out of your comfortable worlds and get to know the "others." You might be surprised what you find.


cassiopeiarl said...

Fascinating post. My favorite thing to do is observe people. I think you're a little off on the "shallower" side, though. Because one specific person fits the mold you described, it does not mean that everyone else with the same outward tendencies does as well.

Rambling Rose said...

I really enjoyed this post. It made me laugh and it made me think. First of all I would like to say that I resent your remark about people calling you amiable. There is nothing wrong with being amiable. :P I have been thinking about what you wrote about profounders and shallowers. I wonder which one I am. I have never considered myself to be either. So I wonder, is it possible to be both at the same time? And if so, am I profoundly shallow or shallowly profound?