WHIPLASH

August 25th, 2021

“I like when you talk about this, but I do not like when you talk about that.”

This is probably the number one thing I hear when someone wants to talk about my output on the internet.

Which is a weird perspective. Because isn’t that just being human?

I think there’s beauty in the whiplash. Posting a photo of my dog taking a nap on Tuesday and then a monologue about conspiracy theories or the varieties of spirituality or death on Wednesday.

It’s not accidental. There’s a method behind the madness.

When you see anything anyone posts, you form an opinion on them. It can change, at least a little, daily. But over time, people become wavelengths in your mind.

When I write, I try to be as honest as possible with you. Well, first with me. That’s the hardest part. And then with you. Generally, when I write about something deeply personal that doesn’t approach “divisive” topics, they resonate greatly and I get great feedback — meaning, for the most part, it’s positive.

When I write about something that’s happening that’s not about me (and might be controversial or a hot button), that’s when things almost always take a turn. Lines are drawn. Clear sides form. Debates flicker in the comment section. People straight up get mad at me. Even though (again, in general) I try to present current events through either a logical or empathetic lens (or, at best, both).

The balance, or juxtaposition, between these two kinds of posts are what I believe lead to genuine connection and conversation.

Because I let you get to know me. And if on Tuesday you were like, “Aw, he’s just a dude who loves his dog and tries real hard to stay sober and misses his mom,” it’s going to be harder for you to completely disregard me when I tell you something that I feel is really important to hear.

Not that anything I say is important, or right, or what you believe. There’s also beauty in diversity. So when I see a person who is one-note — banging the same drum, post after post, their personality transforming into the message — I turn off. They don’t feel like a person anymore. So it’s harder for me to deeply care about what they say.

I never want you to forget I’m a person. No matter how much you hate me, love me, kind-of like me, couldn’t care less about me — I don’t want you forget all the facets of myself I’ve shared, how complex our relationship is, how much of a human I am.

Because, certainly, you’re a human, too. Complex, diverse, extraordinary. Don’t forget it. Don’t just think it. Be it.

Published by dennisvogen

I'm me, of course. Or am I?

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