a reply to: mericks74
I generally tend to go about life, very much aware of two things.
First, I know what I look like, and how shallow human beings are. I know that because they are often shallow, foolish, vapid and too obsessed with
the surface of things, that they have a tendency to prejudge people based on their appearance. Because my appearance, according to the terminally
thick, conflicts with my intellectual capacity, people tend to remember me, and because my actual manner, as well as my way of thinking, are so
starkly contrasted in their opinion, with my appearance, I make impressions on people quite deeply.
The other thing I am very much aware of, is that my priorities are not the same as those of others. I do not care much about my reputation, either in
my life, walking around my locality, or in terms of the way my conduct affects people on the internet. It is nice, don't get me wrong, when people in
either sphere can get along with me for some reason, or appreciate some element of my conduct or commentary, but it is not the reason I contribute
here, and it is not the reason I behave the way I do in my local life either.
I do what I do because it suits me to do what I believe is right, to make the best efforts I can to follow my path, to make my own mistakes, to live
my own life in a manner which is conducive to holding and upholding the principles I find important. Whether other people appreciate those things or
not, is less important to me than remaining true to my core. Reputation is pleasant to have, but at the end of the day, it is not the be all and end
Here is the thing about a reputation...
I know many people, and many more people than that know me, know either my face or my contributions here, or know me from local life. They have ideas
about me that they formed mostly on their own, about who I am and what I am. Some people know me as that guy at the bar, others as their firm friend
and brother, others still as little more than that guy who dresses in a long black coat, and terrifies the trendy people when walking through town.
But life is fragile. I could die tomorrow. Everyone I know could be wiped out in a calamity of some sort, with no warning, leaving me in the ruins of
my life, without any familiar faces, surrounded by people who know nothing of me, and care even less than that. Reputation only matters if you believe
that the people who have the opinion of you which adds up to your reputation, or indeed that you yourself, are going to live for ever.
I know I will not. Therefore, reputation matters less to me, than living every day of my life with the right stuff in mind. For example, where you
might act strangely and out of character to avoid doing something you have no interest in, against your reputation, I would merely be honest. Why?
Because although I have no interest in my reputation, I do have an interest in being honest. If I turn to you and say "Sure, I will sit and watch
three hours of conservative propaganda, no sweat!" that would be dishonest. I would hate to do that, it would suck for me. Therefore I would more than
likely explain "No, I have no interest in that. I would rather rub my soft parts raw with sandpaper and bathe in lime juice."
A reputation, if its generally positive, can be a lovely thing to have, but it does not matter enough to change the way you act to either maintain or
destroy. It is an irrelevant byproduct for me, an accident. The fact that I live my life my way, quite without my design or attention being paid by me
to how I come across to others, has garnered me a reputation amongst people I know, am local to. But that reputation for good or ill is not important
to me in the least. My opinion of myself and whether I am doing right by my own measure, is far more important.