Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Hiss! Scratch! Claw! Meow!

My two best friends in the whole world are both women. We spend a lot of time together. But as is the case any time human beings spend a lot of time together, it becomes easy to get on one another's nerves. More importantly, it becomes easy to know how to get on one another's nerves. As a result, these two women about whom I care so very deeply will sometimes get in fights. It's never a big deal. They don't happen that often and they never last very long. Here's the problem though: I don't enjoy it. And I think I'm supposed to. A lot.

In spite of commonly held belief, there is not a printed manual that catalogs the standard male responses to visual stimuli, but if there were, I'm pretty sure "WOMEN FIGHTING" would get it's own chapter, with huge thumbs (among other appendages) up for approval. But I just don't like it. It makes me uncomfortable. I've never enjoyed seeing people I care about in conflict. And I don't want to pick sides, even though I usually think one of them is right, or at least a little more right, than the other. Sure, it might be because these aren't actual physical fights. There's no hair pulling or hitting or garment tearing. But I honestly don't think that would make me feel any better about it. I think I'd still feel awkward, only now I'd feel obligated to keep a supply of Bactine and gauze pads to apply to any fresh wounds. No, these are verbal fights, where words are used to inflict as much harm as any blunt or sharp object. Maybe that's what it is. I enjoy words, written and spoken, and respect the impact they can have, both positive and negative. And maybe hearing them used as tools of destruction by people I care about is just too unsettling. I know what you're going to say ; "Just tune out whatever it is they're saying and pretend they're fighting over you, Clark". Well, of course I've tried that. It doesn't work. Possibly because they often are actually fighting over me. But that's another story.

No comments: