Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Two Weeks of, "Who me? Sarcasm free?"
Sheesh! Has it really been only two weeks?
I feel like I've been hearing dozens of "helpful" voices reminding me, "Mrs. G, was that sarcasm?...Mom, do you need to change your bracelet?...Mrs. G, can I add another $1.00 to the board?...Sweetheart, are you wearing your bracelet right now?...Man, Mrs. G, you're having a B.A.D. day!" for a couple of consecutive eternities!
Oh, the pain of having my favorite literary devices–euphemism, litotes, hyperbole, irony, and my beloved pun!–called on the carpet as sarcasm! (But, of course, I am not bitter...sullen, sardonic, and acrimonious, perhaps...but not merely bitter!)
However, in the spirit of reflective practice, here are the Top 10 Things I've learned in the last two weeks:
1) I'm lazy when it comes to interpersonal communication. Sarcasm is my one-trick pony. Without it, I babble or become stymied. All of this is humbling for someone who considers herself an extrovert with a high EQ!
2) I measure communication success by the amount of laughter (or groans–I'm not picky!) evoked. Laughter from an audience–whether it be 17 AP English Lit & Comp students during second period or dozens of women at a retreat or several hundred teachers at a convention–is my #1 drug of choice. I'll trade horses and chocolate and oxygen in exchange for laughter, any day!
3) I lack conversational skills. When it quickly becomes clear that a companion doesn't find me amusing (i.e. my one-trick pony has failed to impress!) I back-up plans are (a) hasty retreat or (b) painful silence. I've always envied those who can skillfully draw others out with open-ended questions. But clearly, I've taken no steps to learn or practice their skills!
4) I work hard to maintain a negative attitude. This is especially hard to admit, as I consider myself an eternal optimist! But listening to myself defend the value of my caustic comments has made me aware of how quickly I descend into negativity and how adamantly I defend my right to go there.
5) I'm fabulous at focusing on problems but fail at finding solutions. My favorite genre of literature is, not surprisingly, satire. All the fun of holding others up to ridicule without a stitch of responsibility for initiating change!
Okay, so much for my Top 10 list: the first five are so depressing, I wanna crawl back in bed. Actually, that's a poor cliche for me, since as a Choleric, I deem sleep a complete waste of time. I'm more of a hit-the-mall kinda gal than a pull-the-covers-over-my-head kinda gal.
So, tune in tomorrow for the final five of my Top 10...
(...or come join me in the mall!)