Gossip


“Rumor travels faster, but it don’t stay put as long as truth. ”
― Will Rogers

Why is it when you put more than two people together, you can’t expect anything that is said to stay between those two people? Well, not usually anyway.

The easiest way to keep a secret is without help. ~Author Unknown

I suppose there are some people we can really, really trust with our deep dark secrets or thoughts, or even just our every day stuff. But for the most part, it seems like if you get two people together, it’s like having birds sending messages over the airwaves.

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I’m just waiting to tell everyone where the seeds are!

“Every man is surrounded by a neighborhood of voluntary spies.”
Jane Austen

It seems that even if we just happen to tell someone something in passing, or casually–if it feels like some juicy tidbit, a grain of gossip, it gets passed along to the next person only to grow into something larger than the original seedling.

Maybe the person passing on the gossip feels empowered, or that they are somehow gaining an ally by the telling of this tale–but in the end, no-one really wins. Somehow the truth gets lost in all this telling and re-telling–kind of like that old story of telephone we used to play as kids: passing on a phrase, whispering down the line until the last person has some complete distortion of the original statement!

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Every day or two, I strolled to the village to hear some of the gossip which is incessantly going on there, circulating either from mouth to mouth, or from newspaper to newspaper, and which, taken in homeopathic doses, was really as refreshing in its way as the rustle of leaves and the peeping of frogs.

How, then, does one know who to trust? How does one just speak freely? I tend to be a very honest person. If someone at work asks: how’s it going? I will say: I’m having a tough day here. Ah, but then it gets blabbed all over the place and potentially back to where it shouldn’t (like management). Jeepers. Then don’t ask! Or should I just lie? That’s not my style though. I mean, I don’t even think that something as simple as this will be repeated as some important trifle needing to be shared.
These gems that seem to boost someone else are a mystery to me. Are they like Thoreau’s peeping of frogs–refreshing to some in small doses? Do they derive some sort of adrenaline rush from it? I simply don’t get it.
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PEEP!

By nature I’m admittedly a blabber mouth, but if someone tells me something in confidence and says: please do not share what I’m telling you–then I don’t! But apparently others don’t abide by these same codes. It’s just blah blah blah… Changing my behaviors more than I have may be near impossible after all these years. It may simply be suffer the consequences (as usual) for my honesty. So be it.

It would just be so nice if folks could just respect a conversation and keep it sacred between the folks that shared it. Eliminating gossip: from the work place, the news, families, completely–would make this a whole more honest world!

If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees. ~Khalil Gibran, Sand and Foam

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Best Buds


There are days where my daughter teases me that I will turn out to be one of those old women who has bunches of cats and maybe dogs living in my house. Today is one of those days I think maybe she is right.

When I was a docent in a zoo many years ago,  I learned that some people prefer animals to humans. The zoo-keepers, the men and women that personally tended some of the animals at this particular zoo, were often very quiet and introverted humans. They took their jobs very seriously and the animals in their care were fed, medicated, groomed, bathed and loved by these people in a way that was quite simply amazing.

It was a relationship that I am now beginning to understand more fully as I grow older. As I have more and more relationships with humans, and am let down by them, I am coming to appreciate why these zoo-keepers would find more dependability in the interactions with their wards.

I’ve been sort of like a zoo-keeper in that I tend to take care of people. I like to give and help. But I find as the years pass that most aren’t really grateful or responsive the way an animal would be. They at least expect you to show up the same time every day and wag a tail or purr in expectant hunger. People, on the other hand, seem to think they are simply entitled to what you may give them. Often without a thank you. It’s odd.

And animals are usually very predictable, while we all know humans are usually not. Even people we think we know often surprise us with mean or dismissive words. Our domesticated pets are always happy to greet us, even if we are angry with them. Even the most beaten down dogs can be rehabilitated with love. And most pets prefer routine — things to be the same.  Wild animals are like this too following patterns.

It sadly becomes harder to trust people it seems because of their changing natures. Never reliably acting the same way. While animals have so few characteristics that we don’t have to wonder what they are thinking all the time. It makes loving them much easier.

While I don’t want to end up living alone in a house with nothing but furry creatures, on particular days I certainly can understand why people prefer animals to humans. My frustrations trying to understand people grows all the time. Constantly trying to change myself is exhausting, but expecting others to change seems futile.

So I will keep my best buds around. They don’t talk back, they love me unconditionally, they are completely trustworthy and they are pretty easy to figure out. That’s more than I can say for most humans I know.