Rick DeMarinis May 3, 1934
As DeMarinis told an interviewer on NPR Performance Today in 1988, "what we do to each other [is] often grotesque and often result[s] in life dilemmas that are almost insoluble."
Several stories, in fact, ironically question the legitimacy of "normalcy" itself, asking how abusive or controlling aspects of human behavior can become comfortably "ordinary."
I chose the two quotes above to bring into my lesson for this story because I felt that they most closely aligned with what DeMarinis was attempting to tell me.
I find myself examining the behavior of others quite a bit, and with more frequency, as I attempt to understand my own behavior.
I’ve been thinking a lot my father’s behavior especially now as I am going to have the chance to be a father myself.
I have mentioned before in these lessons that I really have a difficult time understanding why my father would undertake the challenge of being a father and then step back, look at the long view, and decide to abandon it...in the traditional way.
I suppose that the two quotes at the top really highlight his behavior. My father leaving the family was considered “normal”. Divorce had become more accepted and, well, I suppose I shouldn’t lay the whole thing on him, both my mother and father felt that it was the right thing to do at the time.
Over the years though it has become apparent that my mother was never in favor of the divorce.
Which begs another question.
Her actions over the years – or inaction and silence. Was it, or could it have been, as damaging as my father’s actions?
Sure, I’d say so – there has to be a balance to everything.
My inability recently to really articulate my thoughts to others may be due to me being afraid of offending them in some way. I am really holding back in what I say to others in most situations.
Is this a good thing?
Well, it certainly spares their feelings but at the same time, I walk around feeling like an idiot most of the time.
I have learned to measure out my words before I speak them.
I loved this story because there was something disturbing lurking beneath the surface the entire time.
Just like life.
Looking across the tranquil lake of our life, we have forgot that below that ice still surface lies murky waters with creatures ready to alter our lives in ways that...well... DeMarinis warns us of.
We go about our day to day activities – almost numb – but safe, while our mind has developed the ability to filter out – for our own protection – all the incoming information that could potentially harm us...the really disturbing events that occur around us all the time.
We’ve become desensitized...we have lost the sense of the hunter and the prey – being both in one.
So, I have to filter my words going out, and pull down the filter of everything coming in.
Reality – face it, accept it, live it.