You have to understand something about people- most of the time, you have to give them a reason to like you. What that reason is depends on them, they will decide if you meet whatever criteria (are you funny, kind, ambitious, smart, etc) they set. The best you can do is be yourself, and hope the attract the right kind of people, or be completely fake, and try to be all things to all people. Of course, the more there is to like about you, the easier it will be.

Naturally, the inverse is true, also.

Nothing demonstrates this better than relationships. I’ve been given a real eye opener lately as to how my friends perceive me, though the art of the blind date. My friends feel that I am grasping at straws, desperate, and willing to settle for their dumb, desperate, uninteresting friends. The boring, overly dramatic dullards who don’t seem to catch on that no one gives two shits about their cats, or that “never really been a big fan” doesn’t mean, “please, talk about musical theater for the next four hours.” Aghuh.

Whatever. Look, I know I have a lot of faults, and that I’m not exactly the pick of the litter. I realize that, to be wanted, you have to, well, be wanted. The reasons most women wont date me is obvious. I’m unattractive, overweight, poor, carless, arrogant, strange, a bit of a jerk at times… the deck is stacked against me.

But you know what? I like me. I’m smart, witty, compassionate, romantic, I try to be there for people when they need me, and I make people laugh. Could I improve? Absolutely, but you find me one person on this planet who couldn’t. My life is stable right now, and while I may not be happy with everything, I’m happy with enough to get by. Besides, I’m at my best when I’m both stoic and miserable. And to that extent, I’m done with dating for now. I’m not meeting the right people, and I’m making all the familiar mistakes that have put my life in utter turmoil in the past. The idea that validation comes from being with someone must be shed, or it leads to terrible things. So yes, I’m going to keep being an eccentric, arrogant smart ass who plays with Legos, obsesses over Halloween, and walks everywhere. Not because I think it makes me superior, but because it’s who I am.

I have not had a day off since The 4th of July. Before that? I can’t remember.

I could be at the library right now, pretending to read Breaking Dawn, or getting quarters to do some laundry. Who knows.

But I’m not.

I’m not, because yesterday, in one amazingly painfully awesome moment, I twisted my ankle. This was of course, at the beginning of my walk home. The result was an hour and a half limp fest home. Lame.

Today could have been lots O’ things, but it’s going to be me on a computer.

I can at least take the time to get to know the people on Mojo.

Also, cartoons!

Or I guess I want to be important enough to warrant one. I suppose it’s a good thing that I’m not rich or famous, because that’s the exact kind of craziness I would indulge in. Pull a random name off the internet, and engage in a series of plots against said person. Could you imagine it? Headlines reading “Sarah McLaughlin vows to defeat Ken Patrick of Paw Paw, MO” and “Schemes Foiled by Local Area Man, McLaughlin vows revenge”.

I suppose she’d start by finding out what channels I watch, and at what times. Then, buy ad space and start playing sad music to clips of tortured animals. This would just be to get my attention. Once she made it clear who I was dealing with, she’d start to call my work, and complain to my boss. From then on, it’s time for the big leagues. Going on national television to declare war on me. She then robs the bank where I keep my valuables, using them to taunt me into finding her secret lair. Should I manage to retrieve the stolen goods, she’ll kidnap my girlfriend (or, if I don’t have one, cleverly disguise herself as a cute girl who likes me) and force another confrontation. Should I emerge victorious yet again, she’ll no doubt send some kind of laser-guided Tykebomb after me.

This of course leads to the final confrontation, in which Sarah (we may as well dispense with the formalities, since one of us is about to die) monologues to me on top of an abandoned building. Of course, it’s raining. Once I defeat her in honorable combat, she plays the final ace. The building has been rigged to explode. As she laughs manically, I run, leaping desperately to the next rooftop as the building crumbles into dust and smoke. I make it! No wait, I am slipping! Scrabbling, I barely make it. Exhausted, I survey the fallen building, satisfied that the long battle against Sarah McLaughlin is finally over.

Or is it?