Monday, November 11, 2013

Sept Ans

Seven years ago today, I committed the largest 'crime' in my life. Technically that isn't exactly true, but what I did was not illegal at the time, nor it is illegal today. Also, my guilt as it is probably not as a principal but as a collaborator or an accomplice.  It would be more accurate to say that seven years ago, I helped convince someone else to make the worst decision of their otherwise boring life.  Although they might, if they were still talking to me, dispute my calling their life boring.

It was, boring life or not, a huge mistake that I convinced this person to make, I would dare say that it was at the time, and remains to this day the biggest mistake they ever made, or ever wanted to make. Mistakes are sort of like fish sometimes they get bigger in the retelling of their making. This mistake was big enough the first time around to satisfy even the most experienced of tall tale tellers. It was a mistake that was a long time coming, which in theory I suppose, makes it worse. After all, a mistake made off the cuff, or in a fit of passion is a mistake that can, in many ways, be forgiven quickly enough. Sadly, this mistake was made after a lengthy period of what could be considered calm reflection. It was a mistake that took some convincing in order to be made. It was not a 'let's just hop the next plane to Vegas, and spend the rent money on hookers and blow' type of mistake.  That type of mistake, if you are lucky and your heart doesn't explode, is a fairly simple mistake that from which a complete recovery can be made.

The fact that this mistake was made is a damning indictment on me as a person. I never claimed to be a particularly good human being, and I point to this mistake as being proof of that claim.  Most people, most 'good' people make, or at least attempt to make, some sort of apology for their mistake. Me, I decide to compound my mistake (although I did wait a couple of years) by doing all sorts of other bad things to the poor fool I had talked into the mistake in the first place. That is probably the reason that they are no longer speaking to me, for the second time in their life. They have placed me, quite rightly I would say, under a communication ban. I am person non Grata in their world, and I can't says that I blame them.

This was supposed to be an attempt at a 'mea culpa', but it seems I am no good at those either. I tried, several times, to apology for my sins, and I had hopes that it was accepted. I even had some physical proof that things were if not good, at least decent enough for us to be in the same room at the same time. Alas and alack, it was not destined to last, like most of my 'successes' this one proved all too fleeting, and I am left, once again, bemoaning the fact that I am, to intents and purposes, both an idiot and a bad person.  Both of these things I already knew, partially due to the fact that there is no shortage of people in my life that are quite willing to tell me how big of an idiot I am, and exactly how bad of a person I have become.

The idea that 'you are you own worst critic' is not something that needs to apply to me. No, I have several critics that are quite willing to take the wrecking ball of their wit to the shaky house of my confidence with hardly any prompting at all.  Watching yourself being taken apart, brick by brick, it not an uplifting experience, nor is it for the faint of heart.  However, all the wrecking balls, and all the dismantling that has been aimed in my direction about this particular mistake are miles and miles short of the destruction that I deserve, and that I visit upon myself. It was quite simply (I know like I put anything simply) wrong of me to do. It was akin to telling a Jewish refugee that 'sure you can crash at my house', and then finding the nearest Nazi and informing him of the Jew you have on the sofa. Certainly, a death camp was not the result, but physical death is not always the worst thing that can happen to a person.

Seven years does seem a long time to be holding on to a regret like a drowning man holding on to the only plank in sight on an otherwise empty ocean, but in the grand scheme of things it is merely a blip in the time frame of the world. The world barely registers seven years as time enough to accomplish anything, but me and this person are not the world (well maybe writ small), and seven years is a significant amount of time in the context of the time we are allocated on this world.  In many ways it is the most important, for good or bad, event in both of our lives.  Which is sad on many levels, that I in any shape, form or fashion, am a part of the most important (or even the top three most important) events in someone's life other than my own, is quite terrifying.

Perhaps if I had felt more of that terror seven years ago today whilst standing in front of most of my friends, helping this poor sod make the biggest mistake of their life, I would not be typing this 'post of regret' today. Perhaps that terror, coupled with a thing that I am rumored not to possess i.e. common sense, would have lead me to making a different choice. A choice that by this time seven years ago was almost impossible to make, and would have taken an amount of bravery that we are taking an entire day to celebrate in others, which I clearly do not possess. Fortune is supposed to favour the brave, and I do not bemoan my lack of 'fortune' since I am far, far from being that type of brave. I have written, thought, said, and actually felt many things since that fateful day seven years ago, and it would appear that I have many more things to learn, and feel (in spite of my best efforts not to), but one thing that I can say with absolute clarity.  Je suis desole.

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