my response to chuck klosterman’s book i wear the black hat
am i trying to be a villain or is it just that i really don’t give a fuck?
should i try harder to be the villain?
at best, i am unlikable. maybe i should go for the gold and become loathsome?
i have always wondered if my art and writings would gather a larger audience if i were notorious. infamous. maybe i just need to try harder at being a villain.
why am i unlikable? is it my go fuck yourself attitude? i know i’m not physically unattractive. i have even been called beautiful on occasion. however, i don’t follow the conventional rules for beauty. i don’t wear makeup. i rarely comb my hair. i often shave my head. piercings and tattoos and a wardrobe mostly made up of black. boots instead of shoes. my uniform does not encourage positive attention. it tells the world i just don’t give a fuck.
should i just go ahead and don the black hat?
i often tell myself i’m not doing enough to be a good person. so then i go out and do something like…foster a puppy. i thought, i have experience with fostering animals and am an experienced dog trainer. i should give back to society by fostering a dog.
and seemingly without a second thought, i found a puppy living in my house.
and then i started to slowly lose my mind.
i don’t like taking care of things. anything. my first boyfriend, while laying in a fetal position on the floor, was like, “would you take care of me if i had polio?” and i was all like, “no!!”
i don’t like taking care of things.
yet i think i am supposed to take care of things. because i am a woman? because i am supposed to be nurturing? because i want to make the world a better place? because that’s what good people do?
periodically through my life i would quit my easy restaurant job (that allowed me brain space to still write and do art) to take a caretaking job. nursing home, daycare, homeless shelter, humane society, etc.
and each time i would burn out. i am empathetic to a fault. i care too much, if that is a thing. so caretaking leaves me drained. compassion fatigue, they call it. i become dead on the inside because i have drowned in my own empathy.
that’s not a thing, you might say…but it is the best way for me to explain why i cannot be a caretaker.
i probably never should have had kids.
but i do have kids and taking care of them and taking care of me is all i can do.
so why do i keep telling myself i should be doing more? why do i do something like apply to foster dogs when i am already at the very limit of my very limited caretaking ability?
do i really think it makes me a better person?
it does not. i become horrible and brittle. angry and reactive.
how many times a day do i threaten to strangle the puppy. sure, he can’t understand english, but how much is my negative energy harming him? my inability to cuddle and pet him because i just want to throw him out a window?
i would not throw him out a window.
i know this about myself. as horrible as i am, the little voices are just that. voices. they have no control. i just listen to them to the extent of imagining what it would be like to give in to them.
but then i tell myself to knock it that fuck off, and i feed the puppy and try to talk to him in a nice voice.
i heard myself tell an acquaintance in a pubic market that i wanted to strangle the puppy. i thought, oh, maybe i shouldn’t say that out loud, but then i realized i didn’t care what anyone might thing of me.
i’m not going to strangle the puppy.
i’m just frustrated.
frustrated with the dog rescue that offers no support, dropping off a puppy without any resources.
frustrated with myself for once again taking on more than i am capable of doing. yes, physically i can care for a puppy…but mentally and emotionally? nope. too much.
i need to stop trying to prove to myself and the world that i am a good person.
i need to admit that i am not nurturing.
i am not a caretaker.
but does this make me a villain?
chuck klosterman said that a villain knows but doesn’t care.
except hitler who cared but didn’t know? (i’m still not clear on that one.)
i know…and i care…but i’m all out of fucks to give.
giving a fuck would surely destroy me.
and that’s probably what makes me a villain.
up top: “roadtrip to oz” 9X12 mixed media on watercolor paper…$75