A Virtuous Fragrance

In a world where many of the prettiest fragrances are filled with possibly carcinogenic ingredients and it’s strenuous on the environment to produce them I have often asked myself why. Why do I bother collecting perfume? Why is it worth it? Often I come down to an answer of how much personal joy it brings to discover new olfactory gems and wear them. Or I tell myself that by collecting vintages I’m actually preventing waste and loss. Sometimes I reason that if I wear the newer ones with phthalates sparingly at least I’m indulging in moderation. Hopefully safe moderation, that is, of course.

The thing is, life is difficult for everyone. Whatever lies you’ve believed otherwise I hope you realize that truth someday reader if you haven’t already. Of course, some people have harder lives than others. Much more painful. But no one escapes this life unscathed.

On that note, humility is profound and virtuous. Unfortunately, many mistake genuine humility for weakness or material lack nowadays. If you’re not obvious about your blessings in some carefully crafted and at times perversely subversive way people too often assume they don’t exist. Or weirdly, people eventually seem to then decide that they deserve what you have more than you do if they garner some comprehension that your blessings do exist. They attack you in their minds and hearts because they can’t figure out why they can’t just be superior to you, why you rightfully and righteously deserve what you own as they believe they are entitled to be better and enjoy it. They can’t conceive of a world where they aren’t god. Where they don’t get to lord it over others in some way. Some way… (read desperation) People are ugly at times. A lot of people. And they rarely admit to it. Especially to themselves. That would be too challenging to get over. Recognizing their own potential for evil… Too much to handle mentally or emotionally?

But really, it’s more comforting to think your neighbor driving an old pickup truck is doing so because he can’t afford a new and nicer one if you’re insecure. It’s more mature, healthier and more emotionally stable to realize you don’t really know your neighbor’s financial situation. Maybe your neighbor is just smart and doesn’t want to waste his money on something he doesn’t need or doesn’t genuinely want. Maybe he’s just not a fool… But nowadays it’s easier for a lot of people to tell themselves something false and yet comforting that makes the neighbor seem like less of a threat to their ego.

People are offended by evil more openly nowadays and that’s good but they also have less tolerance for somewhat painful but necessary truths we used to be taught to handle from an early age. Namely, some people have more than us. And you can’t just hate people blindly or steal from them in some way or another because it bothers your ego (different than being genuinely in need when it becomes more ethically tricky).

It’s bourgeois to need to prove yourself. But few people understand social class anymore either. Well, it’s bourgeois unless you’re talking to someone who too often makes huge assumptions and would probably never admit to it. Then Heaven help you if people take the “assumption maker’s” badly thought out judgments and prejudices seriously for their own egotistical reasons. They’ll crucify you in some way (particularly in their own head), all stemming from the glimmer of dark-hearted hope they found in the dishonest and self-soothing conclusions someone else drew and then gossiped about secretly? Or maybe just said openly on occasion. They’ll laugh and giggle endlessly behind your back because they believe anything that makes them feel good?

After being harassed by false friends and emboldened open foes you decide you need to explain the obvious for the sake of principle. Perhaps over and over and over. People aren’t receptive. You make a jerk of yourself in the process, of course. But people shouldn’t be that obsessive about your truck. It’s very weird and very gross to have to explain but you might think it’s necessary to defend your honor and to refuse to be bullied. You might even explain in a way that seems funny to you at the time… It’s nice to have a sense of humor about things. And people are supposed to be adults when they’re adults. At least that’s often my naive assumption. Very naive I guess. I am guilty of that.

And, on that note, I’m looking for a new fragrance. I’ll buy Boy and the new Les Exclusifs de Chanel. But I want one more truly new one this year…

So, I bought some samples. And my husband bought a fun lemon fragrance he’ll give me as part of a wedding anniversary gift this summer. Some would approve and others would think because it doesn’t cost over $100 it’s subpar. *shrug*

But no, I’ve given up on it all. I did try in my own silly way to defend myself. To explain. I grew up being taught to value quality and humility over pride. Yet, I tried being more obvious for those who seemingly made assumptions and couldn’t truly even imagine a world they didn’t immediately grasp without being told something new (there are a lot of adults who seem to not like being told things they don’t already know) but…*shrug* I’m over it. There is objective truth. God. There really is. And no one owns it. Wins it. Not really. It just is. And unfortunately if you try to point it out to some people they ignore you or hate you for it. They’d rather just…live in their own world regardless of how it squares with actual reality. Decide your truck was “the best you could do” and if you dare threaten that perception they can’t handle it. They’re volatile. And instead of realizing that and realizing that they deserve actual empathy for their actual pain they would rather maintain a pretty veneer and defend it maliciously. And sometimes they do create a pretty veneer indeed… A lovely one.

I’m not as evil or crazy dears as you would like to imagine in your worst moments. I’m not stupid either. Fat. (my words about needing to lose pregnancy weight were egotistically misconstrued in the past as they often have been) Ignorant. Backward. Lazy. Passive-aggressive. Conniving. Dishonest… Evil… (the top insults people seem to want to throw at me) …Yes, I can be evil (we all can be and I try to be accountable for it) but just because I’m not suffering enough to make you happy doesn’t mean I’m the Devil. And unfortunately if you hate me your thoughts probably revolve around “me” and the world you’ve imagined I live in more than I ever even remotely think of you. And that’s not an insult. Truly. It’s just a fact. …And you know what, because your perspective is so much about you you probably don’t really think of (the real) me much either. So it’s even? Fair? Sort of… We don’t think of each other in reality much at all, I guess. *ironic laugh*

I wish we could have all been real friends. Sincerely. Truly. (How, at this point, do you not get that I’m not lying sweeties? *rolling eyes*) But I guess you misunderstood my truck *shrug* and that just meant too much for all of us in the long run.

More tomorrow.

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