Day 7 - Coping with small chat monologues

Some people have no idea when or how to start and end a conversation. They ask you a question, you provide an answer, and they seize on the first thing you mention that they can link to something in their life. And then it's blast-off. They just talk and talk and talk until they're finished. Oblivious to the pain and desolation in your eyes, they off-load a decade's worth of annoyances, grievances and past offenses with no consideration of your time or your personal tastes. They are over-eager to tell a story about themselves and what pours out of their mouth is complete and utter monotony. Capable of only speaking in monologue, they exist to project. The nicest people in the world can have this tendency. Nobody knows what causes it, although there are some reasonable guesses. Guess #1: they are hyper-sensitive and need to relive a moment in time when they were frustrated or offended. Due to their sensitivity, they simply got offended and they failed to address the offender in the very moment. Too much sensitivity prevents the brain from being agile, or witty. Too much sensitivity also causes the brain to dwell on the past, when the person let slip the opportunity to speak up, argue back, counter-punch. And so, their "stories" become mind-numbing little diatribes against people who hurt their feelings or moments in time that they yearn for because the current day is just so horrible with all the injustice in the world. To summarize, they are detached from the present and have been for a very long time. Their stories are awful because their telling you about times when, again, they were not living in the moment. That is why their descriptions are too detailed, their timelines filled with minutiae; they're trying to paint a full picture so you can feel what they think they felt at the time. Tragically, they are only interested in themselves and what they felt at different moments in time. Every event (a concert, a dinner somewhere, a trip through Italy) is about how they felt at the time, but not how the band sounded, how the dinner tasted, who they met. There's a strange anxiety at play in their minds, almost a parasite. Whatever the cause, it comes down to one thing: The ego. Theirs is fragile, impressionable, and self-centered. This disease is vicious and it afflicts all ages. The ego or the superego, as Freud terms it, is a corrosive bile that erodes all pleasure and detaches the psyche from all the beauty of living the moment. Meditation is a practice to treat this disease and lead us to the cure: engaging in hobbies and work that fill us with automatic, unthinking joy. In two words, healthy entertainment.

Well wishes to the self-obsessed. 

Praise to the gods of entertainment.   

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