Tuesday, March 10, 2009

re: mulitiply sarcasmic or today's angst brought to you by the letter S

Sarcasm is the refuge of small minds or so they say. There are so many quotes and quips denouncing sarcasm that to list them would take two internets.

But it gets damned more than it deserves. I'm not completely endorsing it - rather I'm defending the necessity of unpleasant things. Some people are sarcastic because they are terrible, others because they feel terrible, and sometimes it's the habit of terrible feelings past.

To wit: "Sarcasm: the last refuge of modest and chaste souled people when the privacy of their soul is coarsly and intrusivley invaded." Dostoevsky

Perhaps that feeling of invasion - or fear thereof - lasts longer than the invasion itself and so that sarcasm you developed carries over as your go-to defense mechanism. The sarcastic are, or were once, insecure people. But so is everyone really, at least a little.

Let's not get too melodramatic - the sarcastic are not all broken or fragile or pathetic. But they were, once, and the sarcasm is the scar of where they broke once or were afraid of breaking. But scar tissue is not inherently unhealthy - it can cause problems, even prevent growth, but it's also a sign of healing and re-growth.

And it has to be because I am at my least sarcastic when I feel most comfortable - except when I'm my most sarcastic when I feel most comfortable. So embrace the 'casm where it is the space allowing two objects to exist.

To wit: "Sarcasm and compassion are two of the qualities that make life on earth tolerable." Nick Hornby.