I had an exchange with a friend of mine not too long ago. Well, perhaps “friend” is the wrong word. “Person I know” is probably more accurate. Although, if I’m honest, I don’t really know her all that well. Or even at all. Skrew it, let’s just call her “a person”. So I was chatting to a person the other day (who happens to be pregnant) and she remarked, whilst eating a bowl of 2 minute noodles (the South African equivalent to Ramen) that “this is obviously what the baby wanted”. Nothing wrong with that, right? Pretty normal thing to say. Well, not normal for EVERYONE to say, I guess. I once told a waiter, after ordering ribs, that “the baby was having the STRANGEST cravings” and got more than a few worried looks over the course of the evening. And, possibly, a little bit of saliva in my basting sauce. Regardless, pregnancy cravings are a thing, I’m told and so this person’s statement was hardly a shocking one. Although, I did find myself wondering, could SHE not just have felt like a bowl of 2 minute noodles at lunch time on a Wednesday? They’re somewhat tasty and somewhat lunch appropriate. Did EVERY meal really have to be the result of strict, nazi-style orders from the occupant of her womb?
This got me thinking of lies (again).Lies, and the motivation behind us doing the things we do. Let’s start with a typical work scene. It’s shockingly early ‘o clock on a Monday morning. That blogger from South Africa you enjoy reading has forgotten to upload his promised Sunday post, AGAIN, (sorry) and you’re at your cramped desk, wishing you were pretty much anywhere else in the entire world. A chipper co-worker enters, asking about your weekend. You snap at stupid Patrice and her stupid too small purple dress, who shrinks off with a smile a few molars smaller than when she walked in. Some hours later, you feel bad and apologize to stupid Patrice, explaining that you “hadn’t had your morning coffee yet.”
Or, if you’ll allow me to get a bit risqué, you’re hanging out “at da club”, feeling sorry for yourself because your significant other/crush/bae (pukes in mouth) hasn’t been showing you that hoochy love that you need. So you go hunting around the club for the first sweaty body willing to have an ill-advised tryst with you. Because you’re sad. And trysts make sad you feel better.
Both of these scenarios seem perfectly logical and reasonable, right? You haven’t had your morning coffee so you lashed out. Normal. You were sad about your failing love life and so wanted a little validation of the lips-on-lips kind. Normal. Or you were a pregnant lady eating some cheap food because of them cravings. All normal. But, like, people lash out even when they have had their morning coffee, right? And not pregnant people eat 2 minute noodles too sometimes, right? And people kiss other peoples in clubs, right? (I’m told this happens). For no reason other than because they want to do these things. Which got me thinking. Maybe:
a) You don’t NEED a deeper reason to do these things and other things and things in general and/or
b) maybe we use the cause/effect and corresponding solution of popular culture as an excuse for our behaviour.
As I said in point A, if you’re gonna do your thing, do it. I’m not so narcissistic to believe that what I say will change how you do things anyway. (I totally am). But, maybe, there’s also room for us to evaluate our decisions on a case by case basis. To decide how we feel about something without just falling into how we’re expected to behave or respond. To ask whether this thing that I’m doing makes sense FOR ME, or whether it just makes sense for MY FRIENDS. (Or YOU and YOUR FRIENDS. or whatever. You know what I mean, dammit.) Maybe, even without your morning coffee, you don’t need to lash out at stupid Patrice? (Or maybe, even WITH your morning coffee and a croissant, you DO need to lash out at stupid Patrice. Because who doesn’t know what toner is?) Maybe you don’t need to touch faces with THAT boy in the club. What about THAT boy in the club? Or THAT girl? (For you boy readers. I am not a pervert. Winking face.) And maybe you pregnant ladies, … nope. You just keep doing and eating what you want. You’re perpetuating the future of our species. Go to town on those noodles.