{Controversial}

In one of my Art History classes at ASU, my professor forced us to watch a droning documentary about a deconstructionist philosopher who I considered to be a total idiot. [But then, I was the student and she was the professor and what did I know? I had to do a whole lot of conforming to land an “A” in that loathsome course.]

Anyway, I remember nothing–nothing–from ARS 451, save that documentary. Or more specifically, one line in the documentary. The French philosopher, in reference to his publications, said this: It is extremely difficult for me to allow any of my theories to be published. I feel I must always apologise for my words.

Afterwards, I questioned my professor as to the philosopher’s meaning. “Didn’t he believe in his life’s work? Why should he apologise for his existence?”

She said [condescendingly, as though my very presence was irritating her], “It’s not that he didn’t believe in his theories; he simply wasn’t brash enough to take time out of people’s lives by publishing something they might happen to read.”

Excuse me? Are you being serious with yourself? I could not–nor can I yet–grasp how someone could talk themselves into writing a work–any work–put all that effort into it, and then feel repentant for having bothered the world. I don’t understand.

The reason I am taking this stroll down memory lane is because I have been faced with a similar decision: whether or not to publicise my thoughts on a certain issue, and if so, whether or not to apologise for writing it. I posted something not long ago–a post of which I was rather proud. It is not often that I can perfectly convey my meanings and ideas in words–they usually get lost in translation somewhere between my muddled brain to everyone else’s. But that time I wrote about how hard it is for me to make good, quality friends, I pretty much nailed it. I wrote what I meant–what I’d pondered for months, or maybe years. I didn’t intend that post to be insulting, or as a “hint” to people who would otherwise be my friends. I mean, as far as I’m concerned, I am friends with anyone who reads my blog.

Then, more than a week after I wrote it, someone commented anonymously, telling me I could go to Hell. Yes, Hell.

At first I was startled. I never imagined I could offend someone with that post–I didn’t mean to, after all…The only woman I was talking about was the one I’ve been working with for the past three weeks, and I know she doesn’t read my blog.

Then I got mad. It is a fool who takes offence where offence is not intended. Someone wise said that–I don’t recall who. Anyone who wants to tell me to go to Hell anonymously, and not give any reasoning or rationale, well…that’s just petty.

But then I got over both the shock and the anger, and have finally settled on being flattered. It means people actually read my blog! It means I stir up feelings–albeit negative feelings–in my “readers.” And that is an honour.

I am controversial! I should write a book and apply to be on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

(P.S. Spell Check knows the word “Oprah.” Maybe if my book is good enough, spell check will recognise my name!) And I will owe all my future success to my own writing–the post that made someone mad enough to tell me I could go to Hell.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to {Controversial}

  1. Loralee Choate says:

    I felt the same way. At first.
    You get enough vicious, hideous trolls on your blog and you get weary of it.

    I have 72 people blocked at a firewall level from my blog. I have no interest in listening to them or their poison or mean spiritedness.

    Some people are ok with that and I was was for over a year. Now? Screw it. I want my blog to be a place where I don’t have put up with that kind of crap.

    Your post was just fine. Trolls are people who get a kick out of being aholes and offensive. All in a cowardly manner, of course.

  2. Melissa says:

    I like reading your blog for many reasons and your candor is one of them. Your blog is your blog and you should say what you think and feel. There will always be those out there who are critical and negative. Good way to turn it into a positive experience.

  3. Lindsey Burnham says:

    I hadn’t seen that comment on the other post! Wow, that’s intense. I’m with you though-you should be flattered.

    Let me know when you go on Oprah. Or better, see if you cen get me tickets and I will BE THERE! That is going to be incredible! Maybe I can even be the editor or your book!

    Love you, miss you…

  4. Jami says:

    I LIVE for your posts camille! Seeing as I am a stay at home mom, and I don’t have much excitment, except for diapers, and dinner, and spencer coming home…your blog is a delight! I get so excited when you update…and the few times that I have put MY name in your post I have felt privlaged…I mean really, I feel like I have made it in the world when you feel that you can mention my name on your amazing blog. so tell the other person to GO TO HELL back!

  5. lindser-lou says:

    Josh Nelson recently played me a new song entitled “we’re not mean, you’re just too sensitive.”

    I think it applies perfectly, and might even be considered as a new sub-title to your blog! :)

  6. lindser-lou says:

    oh, and i wanted to tell you – please send me your email and new canada cell number! I would have most definitely invited you to my ugly christmas sweater party! you would have been the liveliest addition!

    does it cost more to text to a canada number?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Excellent grabber! I think that philosopher was an idiot, too. Why would one publish something that he feels he must later apologize for? It just doesn’t make sense; why publish something if you are later going to regret it? It’s like those people who write you an e-mail and say, “I probably shouldn’t have written that last comment…” Then why in the world didn’t you erase it??? I don’t understand… At any rate, you have NOTHING to regret with the former posting; it was a quality piece of work. It is my belief that the person who told you to go to Hell is probably one who is jealous that you are not friends with him or her.

    By the way, what’s up with using s in the words APOLOGIZE and RECOGNIZE??? No dice, Mill.

  8. LetterToKayleen says:

    it was me.

    no. no. no. i don’t do stuff like that. i would tell you “to go to hell” in a nicely hand written letter. saying something like that via blog? well, that’s just insincere.

    oh, the blog drama. fan-tastic!

    i really enjoyed that post and could feel you completely on the issue. i also thought that it was delivered with as much tact as it was with wit and humor. well done.

  9. Melenie says:

    For the record, it wasn’t me.

    I would never stoop so low.

    I am hurt and, a bit angered, that you refuse to respond to my emails, but that isn’t for discussion here.

    I just wanted to make it known… it wasn’t me.

  10. Pingback: R & R | Archives of Our Lives

  11. Pingback: North for the Winter | Archives of Our Lives

Comments are closed.