Society has a serious problem with objectivity. This is because every person perceives everything differently but it’s our job to reign that in before it we end up with racism, sexism, agism and a slew of other prejudices. Being objective is a good strategy for almost any situation, but you don’t want to suck all of the passion out of life. When we find ourselves in a situation, it’s important to attempt to hold some of the outsider’s perspective on our situation or else we can come across as looking a little silly. Perhaps the most perfect example I can give, is the fervently creepy love for cats online.
Many of us, myself included, possess a strong affinity for felines. However, this seems to be one of those affections that often goes unchecked while the person’s grasp on reality becomes ever more tenuous. Inevitably, some of these people will spiral into a disturbing mindset that requires them to spend several unblinking hours defending their cat love at their job while having sobbing conversations about work to their pets once they return home. Cats can make wonderful companions, but there are too many people that view all cats as whimsically cute and cuddly creatures. You can usually recognize these people by the awful names they give their pets (like Miss Constance Wildflower) and how frequently it causes you to roll your eyes. They’ve lost all of their objective powers and do not see the animal for what it really is. Pound for pound, cats are one of the most perfect killing machines currently walking around on planet earth. They should have standard human names, like Burt, or awesome names that showcase their insatiable blood-lust. When kittens grab onto your arm and kick you with their back legs, they aren’t making an attempt at cuteness. They are practicing disemboweling prey or a future rival. Yet I have heard countless people witness a cat doing this and say “Isn’t that the cutest thing you’ve ever seen?”
My response usually goes something like, “Yes. I can’t think of anything more adorable than practicing a violent murder, and I am really trying over here.”
If we were like most other mammals, we would think that cats were just about the scariest thing we could ever encounter. Even as humans we can just watch their behavior and get all the evidence needed to fully assess their sneaky, eerily sexual and violent nature, but we ignore it because they’ll cuddle up with us and we get to wake up to their darling little faces.
However, this kitty blindness is only the tip of the iceberg. It’s probably the softest and least dangerous example I could have given. Very few people are found in their apartments eaten by their cats every year, even thought it definitely does happen. There are so many more important things that we turn a blind eye to, fail to analyze correctly or just flat-out ignore because we’ve allowed our perspectives to become too narrow. Everyone is going to have prior experiences shape who they are and how they deal with the world but, unfortunately, this background can mitigate logical and productive mental processing. This is how one person can see something that seems perfectly obvious to them yet completely unfathomable to another person. Rich people have to suffer though this problem on a daily basis due to their immense wealth creating an uncommon reality that they are forced to live in. There are hero billionaires, like Warren Buffett, who somehow manage to see the big picture, hold onto their objectivity and better the world around them– but I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the morons that make regular claims about how people who earn $250,000 a year really aren’t “wealthy.”
Of course they are, and that’s totally fine, but you can’t claim that you’re “just getting by” on an income that many of us could live comfortably on for several years. I crunched the numbers for myself and found that I could easily live on it while pursuing my dreams and still have enough left over to purchase a new wardrobe, throw some pretty extreme parties hosted by famous DJs, buy a new motorcycle and maybe rent a tiger to ride around on for a week. However, I get what the wealthy people mean when they explain that they they only have enough money to pay the bills. If you purchase a large home in an affluent area, buy a couple of fancy German cars, put two children through a good college, eat all the best foods and take a couple of nice vacations, you’ll only have enough money to get you through that year. You’ll barely have enough left over to afford the extravagant holiday shopping, pay for your mistress to choke you and invest the remnants into the stock market.
Really, though, it doesn’t matter if you’re making fifteen-thousand or fifteen-million every single year. You are probably never going to feel like it’s enough but you will always feel entitled to every penny of it and get defensive if someone even suggests that you may not be. That really goes for everything. Our experience and situation shapes our perspective and, once we’re at a certain point, most of us sort of selfishly feel like we just know best, regardless of what is actually best for the people whose lives we are effecting. This is why nobody wants to pay taxes and Tyler Perry keeps making movies. Everyone is sort of oblivious to the realities of life. I don’t want to blow your mind, but a lot of the most attractive actors and actresses are actually just regular ugly people who happened to have talent, famous parents, or some combination of the two.
We just don’t all have the same information, so it’s easy to miss something sort of important. Have you ever watched a couple flirting at a bar and noticed that one of them seemed sort of awful while the other didn’t seem to be aware of it? That’s because alcohol, desperation, ignorance or past experience has blocked their ability to be even slightly objective in the situation. The whole world functions on these almost invisible threads that create the web that supports society and we have to peer through a pretty heavy fog to see the realities directly in front of us. It’s all pretty amazing if you stop to think about it.
I’ve told my cats about this post.
They are most displeased.
You have been warned.
Good. I love cats because they are warriors, not because they are soft and warm.
Tell them that I am ready.
I had to leave a second comment! LOL. We have three cats and they are warriors, hunters and huntresses. We love our cats and know, that they are mammals of prey, even when they are as cute as they can be when you see them from your sleepy eyes!
Ans, have you read any of the “Warriors” series by Erin Hunter? It is a fun must read for anyone who loves cats AND understands they have a wild side. I have only read like three of four, and they are fun, fluffy, engaging and full of the natural cat behaviors of the wild (like hunting, killing and fighting each other, sometimes to the death!)
A great post Matt! Thanks! :o) AmberLena
I think this post is extremely relevant to a lot of music and television today too. Just because he/she is hot, does not make them talented. Enough said.
My cat is named Elliott. When he makes me mad, I call him Mr. Kitty… he finds it most insulting.
I am oh so loving the last comic. Also, cats are evil monsters disguised in soft fur. I like this post. Ignore my terrible, terrible comment.
I look forward to ignoring your next one.
Also please post on your blog more.
I was just about to do an update!
loads of good stuff my friend! :)
Cats – I learned not to invest love and affection in animals because my dad used to kill them – are duplicitous, cunning and manipulative little beasts who have learned to fool half a dozen little old ladies into feeding them.
As for weird people in bars – ain’t it the truth… :(
Love this post. I think this is why 50% of my day consists of me bitching. People have no perspective and it drives me crazy!
I like cats but I’m really a dog person (I’ve had both as pets), and it always blows my mind when some dimwit says, “oh, my dog would never hurt a fly.” Really? Because last time I checked, your dog couldn’t possibly have verbalized these intentions, or lack there of. In terms of survival, a dog remaining docile and then surprisingly sinking his teeth into your face is called strategy. Pretty genius, actually. Since dogs are not so much with the words (and even if they were, I’m pretty sure there are just as many hypocritical dogs out there as there are hypocritical humans…which is a lot), you should assume that EVERY dog could and would hurt a fly if they needed to.
You had me at “Society has a serious problem with objectivity. This is because every person perceives everything differently but it’s our job to reign that in before it we end up with racism, sexism, agism and a slew of other prejudices.”
I am a life coach that helps people to learn to manage and increase THEIR personal power. In doing that, one of the first things I try to bring awareness and understanding to is that it is physically and mathematically IMPOSSIBLE for any two things, beings or people to experience reality EXACTLY the same b/c we are all OCCUPYING a different area of space/reality.
I always stop to acknowledge this moments when they happen, just like stopping to smell a beautiful flower. It does not take more than a blip of time to enjoy the beauty and fragrance, and there is no chance it will be there when you come back to see it.
“The object is not to be the SAME as everyone else. It is to be The Best You possible each moment.” ~A.L. Powers (my pen name)
This post is like a big “Hello, Old Friend!” from the Universe. Thank you, thank you, Thank You, for pausing, for making one of your moments part of my reality!
Enjoy the rest of this active week! AmberLena :)
I’ve always wanted to have a cat and name him “Punkin Brown”.
And then I realised that Punkin Brown would probably gnaw my face off in my sleep at some point because I was taking up “his side” of the bed.
Also, I’m pretty sure that “Punkin Brown” is what you should name a violent killing machine. In fact, I’m certain of it.
The fog of perspective; The title made me think of, “The Dude”: http://youtu.be/QsogswrH6ck?t=3s.
I’m always searching for truth. I think it’s essential to try, even though it’s more than likely I wont know if I find it in the end or not. It’s the search that matters. Really enjoyed this post.
this is so true, most people just live inside their own bubbles so to speak. quality friday night reading.
The cat thing is all well and good, but you *really* got it right with Tyler Perry. Take a break, Tyler. A loooooong break.
I wouldn’t mind seeing him take a break forever… IF you know what I mean.
If you don’t know what I mean, I’m talking about murder.
I mean, I don’t about you, but my cats are secretly the President and First Lady of the country. They’re so manipulative and precious and keen none but i can prove it…
(Love the post! Taking an “objective” eye is always crucial, but also important to balance with an understanding of the complexity of individuals. We don’t want to be so enamored with the ability to see things from an external point of view that we’re thus reductive to the situation. It is such a tricky tandem and tension to hold! :) )
Speaking of cats…Cat Lover’s Diary?
‘Affinity for felineness’ – sweet way to put it, Posky; never heard of felineness :)
I love it when kittens bite your hand & kick you with their back legs with so much gusto, as if they’re so mighty in the lounge jungle!!! You made me smile with that line :)
LOVE your cartoons, as always
(‘n ps: I just saw you comment that your only prejudice is wearing pyjamas all the time – oi, that AND kitty-lovers-to-excess)
The one about cats was a joke. I’m serious about people who wear pajamas out of the house. That’s unforgivable.
Oh. I understand I suppose, Posky.
So what’s your take on cats wearing itty bitty cute kitty pyjamas?
I’m for it.
About the blindness, I think many people are very limited, by own choice. Focused on pointing out what they like and what they don’t like, preferably with bold statements. It’s narrows the mind and makes life shallow. Just because you like roses, doesn’t mean all the other flowers are ugly.
If you build a wall of restrictions around you, seeing becomes very limited and your ability to make considered decisions is likely to fail.
P.S. I have a cat called Peanut and I had one called Miss Fidel, but she drowned.
P.P.S. Your illustrations are fabulous!
I’m allergic to Peanuts but I’d still probably offer your cat a face rub. I’m sorry to hear about Miss Fidel.
I’m reading Cat Lovers Diary. Hilarious. Some of it reminds me a little of Bridget Jones. Wacky, but lovely.
this is a great post.