Judy Mintz: Twisted straight shooter

From: Everywhere I Go
July 10, 2012 at 12:10PM

I’ve often been told that my emails “sound” just like I do in person. One friend said, “I hear your voice when I read your email.” That makes sense to me. I am, after all, the same person whether I’m writing you an email or speaking to you face-to-face. Of course, I have poorly-developed boundaries, so I’m likely to say things to your face that other people would have the sense to keep to themselves. And clearly, if I’m willing to say it to you in person, there’s nothing to keep me from putting it in writing.

But what about people who are unfailingly polite to your face, and then unleash their inner bitch online? It’s the electronic equivalent of road rage, with one major exception – email is not anonymous. Hello! You’d never dare say something like that to my face, how come it’s okay in email? And what about the people who are more loving in email than in person? There’s no road-related analogy for that behavior (if you don’t count cousin Bram who met his wife, Genie, on the highway, which is a post for another day). Is it simply the lack of eye contact that allows those who are more reserved in person to open up in email? If they could talk with their heads buried in the sand like an ostrich would they be more forthcoming?

Obviously people are emotionally twisted in all kinds of interesting and perplexing ways, and how they communicate, or don’t, is just one manifestation of much deeper issues. I am just as much an emotional pretzel as everyone else, but I embrace a WYSIWYG approach – what you see is what you get. I want to live an uncensored life.

When I say uncensored, I don’t mean like Louis CK uncensored. He is a very funny comedian, and you should all check him out if you don’t know him already, but I sometimes blush even when I’m watching him in the privacy of my own home – alone. So no, I’m not talking about that kind of uncensored. I’m talking about allowing myself to make observations, ask questions, or call out someone who is being cruel. I never mean to say anything hurtful, or rude, but sometimes I do. Then I apologize, on the spot and profusely. That’s also part of living an uncensored life.

Besides, I like the uncensored me, she can be funny, and not always on purpose. It’s all part of my emotionally twisted need to be liked, which is a full time preoccupation of mine, which, come to think of it, is probably why I’m the same in email as I am in person. Phew. It’s exhausting to look too closely at these things. I’m going to go take a nap. Wake me up in time for Louis.


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