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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Fool Me Once...

I realize I haven't posted here for quite some time, but I intend to rectify that as best as possible. The reason I'm up late at night, writing to clear my head, is because I was reminded yet again that there's one aspect of myself I can't escape:

I can't handle being fooled.

This tends to crop up very, very rarely as I keep myself extremely closely guarded to such things due to two simple things. First, I stay humble about things I don't know. This means I don't claim to know something I don't and i don't insist I'm correct in a situation if i'm proven wrong. Second, I don't believe a single word that anyone tells me. Not really anyway. That's all a bit tricky to explain, but I'd best start at the origin for this whole mess. Let's go back to when I was a kid.

I was never a smooth child. I was about as gullible as one could be, believing anything anyone ever told me because, hey, why not? Things were pretty simple with cousins and friends pulling quick jokes here and there, making me believe they could teleport or that they saw a Ninja Turtle in the sewers for real. Most of this was and still is harmless. Children are naive by nature and dang it if it isn't fun to screw with them once in a while.

But it wasn't just simple jokes here and there. I had friends betray some deep trusts for me as a kid that I couldn't quite deal with. One 6th grade friend told me, a 2nd grader, that she was pregnant. I was scared and told my parents because I honestly cared about her, only to discover that she was just "testing me" and that she learned she couldn't trust me. Our friendship was very hard to deal with after that.

As I got older, it became common for my friends to make up some story to get out of playing with me because I was a wet blanket and didn't like taking risks or doing anything remotely "bad" (this is social poison if you're a boy). Tricking a kid so you can ditch him doesn't sound like the most despicable thing kids can do to one another, but it still hurts deep. It took me a painfully long time to come to my senses about how easily my friends were fooling me, which is even more pitiful as being alone so often you'd think I'd have ample time to think.

And that's actually what really did happen. Right around middle school my neighborhood diminished from a thriving manufactured home community with over 150 houses to something like 30 people within the span of a year or two. This left me without close friends and plenty of space to learn to over-analyze myself to oblivion.

By high school I couldn't be fooled, not in the traditional sense anyway. Nothing could surprise me as I'd over-analyzed every situation so much that there was literally nothing that could occur that I hadn't expected and anticipated. I have never been truly surprised to learn that someone was gay, for instance, because I've suspected and prepared for every person I've ever met to someday "reveal" their true self (some are easier to pick out than others).

This is...not the most enjoyable way to live one's life. It's not necessarily paranoia to the extent that I'm not going around actively looking for signs that people are betraying me, but I'm always anticipating that they could betray me any second. Absolutely anyone. My closest friends. My family. Myself. I know these people, and I know they're every bit as capable as those stupid kids when I was little. As a result I make it a point to try and always read people as quickly as possible to determine what, if anything, can be used as ammunition against them later should they choose to betray me. This is bad, the stuff of crazy people, but things got worse as I got older.

Some time near the end of my high school carer I made the mistake of trying to cram as many love triangles into my life as possible. One such all-time fantastic plot revolved around a girl I'd liked for three years, a close friend of mine fresh off a 13-month relationship, and depression-laden old me. To keep things short, my friend went after the girl, they initially didn't work out, I tried to convince her it was for the best, she was still heartbroken, so I got them back together. I dare any other high school senior to do the same thing, but I know you don't have the stones to inflict that amount of suffering upon yourself. The ironic twist? They acted initially as if I didn't realize what was happening. Suddenly I wasn't just be tricked; I was also still being treated like that naive little kid who believed Ninja Turtles lived under my street and 7-year-olds were capable of teleporting onto balconies when my eyes were kept closed for minutes at a time.

I've experienced this deja vu many times, each one with me stating to people that I know what's going on, that I'm not stupid and that I'm also an adult, only to have them assure me that I'm wrong. It typically takes about a week before they just break down and present the truth like it's some sort of elaborate Prestige in an illusion. "Ha ha, silly Chris! You had no clue what was going on this whole time! We're just too clever for you it seems!"

I bring all of this up again because, as I said in the beginning of this, I can't handle being really and truly fooled. A few months ago I woke up only to discover that my email had been hacked and I'd sent out a few simple spam messages to people on my contact list. I was mortified beyond all reason despite no harm really being done.

A few nights ago I got an email offering me a modeling job in Portland for $1,850 for 3 one-and-a-half-hour shoots. I am not now, nor have I ever been, a model. I've never even come close to the appearance of a model, despite my attempts to make it to the gym three nights a week. All of this seemed too good to be true, and I responded as such. They convinced me it wasn't. It was just that simple. Perhaps it was just God answering a prayer for help, for strength, for reassurance of my worth. But it still didn't add up. Tonight, after getting one last confirmation email, that voice in my head whispered gently into my ear, "No one wants your fat ass on their catalog... They're fooling you..." A simple Google search yielded results that pointed to modeling scams with wording dangerously similar to the email I received. "I told you... Who would want your stupid, naive face on ads selling things to good looking people...?"

No, I am not out any money, nor have I given away any information they couldn't already know (save for learning my waist size is 47" and my shoe size is 11). But I came too close to being a fool. I let my guard down and almost got in deep. And despite being able to finally have a night where I'm in bed before 12:30, I'm sitting here, still typing, all because I can't handle being fooled. You may say I'm overreacting, over thinking things. But have you ever learned that the actions you took for three years of your life were all a result of one simple white lie?

Perhaps that's a story for a different restless night.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

No Right Answer and Drinking Games for Thursday, October the 6th

Here we are, Thursday again. Hey, no need to be as sad and morose and I'm sure you'd prefer to be. Let's make today a happy day, shall we?

We can start by diving into the DS (not literally unless you're that far gone) for some quick and simple Drinking Games. Perhaps I just wanted an excuse to played Elite Beat Agents and Scribblenauts again? Perhaps indeed! Check that video out here.

And no Thursday is complete without a hearty debate between Kyle and myself, so let's do a really tough one and debate George Lucas vs George Lucas. Oh snaps! That can be found here.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Ocarina of Time 3D Review at Toy-TMA

It took me some time to think about my experience with Ocarina of time 3D, but that time of thinking is done and the time for action has come! Writing-related action to be specific. Those curious for my full review of Ocarina of Time's 3DS remake, bop on over to Toy-TMA and read the review here.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

No Right Answer and Drinking Games for Thursday, September the 29th

Hey hey, look it's Thursday! Nothing gonna stop us from bringing new episodes of No Right Answer and Drinking Games, so let's just give the quick rundowns and send you to watch them, eh?

For No Right Answer, we just can't help but try and troll the Internet every now and again, so why not pick one of those famous debates and just dive into it? We've got The Smurfs vs the Na'vi for the most advanced blue person society, and I'm fighting on the side of The Smurfs. Go watch that here and comment.

On the other side of the tracks is Drinking Games, freshly picked and ready for a taste. We've done quite enough with video games, so let's take a small break and try out board games, starting with Guess Who?, that timeless game that eight-year-olds are terrible at. Go see what the fuss is about here.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Marvel Civil War Aftermath over at Toy-TMA

It's Wednesday and that means it's my day of the week over at Toy-TMA. For this particular blustery day, I decided to continue forward with my Comic Book Club retrospective on Marvel's current continuity, picking up right after the Marvel Civil War had ended. This pretty much covers the forming of not one, not two, but three separate Avengers teams and leads us through Captain America's death. Those curious, you can check up the article here.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

No Right Answer and Drinking Games for Thursday, September 22nd

Hey everyone, we're here again on a Thursday and the anticipation is high to see who won last week's debate between Goku and Firelord Ozai. We had a HUGE turnout of responses, and while it was close...well you'll just have to watch and see who came out on top...as the worst...strange yes but oh well.

Also in the episode, a new debate! Actually, that's the majority of the episode, so don't feel like you've been cheated or anything! It's Superman: Red Son against Kingdom Come in a battle to decide which gets turned into a movie first. First being the key here as both need to become movies some day. Go watch the episode here.

And of course it just wouldn't be a Thursday with Drinking Games forcing us to think ahead to Fridays. It's not like we all live in college towns where Thirsty Thursdays are in effect! Regardless, it's time for old school Mario Party on the N64, so head here and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tomopop Writings for the Past Two Weeks

I have been rather busy lately, which isn't much different than normal, but in this instance I lost a weekend of computer time due to a required camping trip to Prineville. That's all taken care of and I'm back to the horrifying world that is my life, so I might as well get caught up linking through the the various Tomopop articles I wrote these past two weeks. All of those after the jump!