Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Puppy Dog Eyes

If Cooger and Dark’s Pandemonium Shadow Show ever comes to my corner of the world, I’m going to look into their house of mirrors just to find out why I still harbor the puppy-dog eyes of my youth.

I want to know, specifically, what people see in me that makes many of them treat me as if I were an oft-kicked puppy, forlorn in the eyes and countenance, who must be treated with kid gloves, no matter the circumstances. I’ve studied myself many times in the mirror, and I don’t know what it is that other people see. Including my wife. We were just talking on the phone, and midway through the conversation, she paused, asked, “Are you all right?” So now I have to listen to my voice as well.

Was I that badly treated? Probably no more than any other fat kid growing up in Idaho. I know I was rather sensitive as a kid, but by the time junior high rolled around, I was just about in control as any other kid. But there are vestiges, I’m sure, of some hidden hurt, that occasionally pop out. Not occasionally. They gallop. Because there are many who treat me as if I’m going to burst into tears or something if they so much as fart in my general direction.

I don’t feel like I’m exceptionally gloomy, or sensitive. I take criticism well. Very well, in fact, since I know that I don’t know everything and that there is much in this world that I can learn. But deep inside, I suppose, people must still see some kind of a wimp.

I don’t let it bother me overmuch. Just think about it from time to time, that’s all. I don’t lose sleep over my hidden puppy dog eyes, or whatever it is that others see. I do good work. I’m open to learning. Just once and a while, however, I’d like to find this thing that’s in me and fix it, just a little, so the gloves come off and the pats on the shoulder cease.

No comments: