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    Eldritch Ruminations: Normal? Apr 1, 2016

    Good evening, dear readers. The time is 6:30ish, and I am here to amuse and astound you once again with things that aren't really actually all that important. Today's topic: crazy people. We all know one. Some of you (actually, quite a few of you) maybe even are one. They range from just a little eccentric to hearing voices. And they're really, really common. We've all had that psycho ex-girlfriend/boyfriend who probably kept a stone effigy of us in their closet and sacrificed captured stray cats on it semi-regularly. Just me? Oh. Well, my point still stands. It's a rare person who can go through a lifetime without meeting one.

    Which brings me to the question I wanted to toss out today. Is there really any such thing as being "normal"? I'm certain, given the subject matter of the site, if any of you are bold enough to actually make your talents public knowledge, you've probably been accused of being just a wee bit nutters at least once. People are quick to dismiss anything outside their experience as being impossible, all the better to maintain their comfortable illusion of certainty. They're even quicker to dismiss differing opinions as the words of a "crazy" person.

    I have posited more than once that "normal" is just a word used by the ignorant masses to force anyone who has the audacity to break the mold and be who they are, to reconsider, be ashamed, and become just another cookie-cutter human being with no quirks or oddities that define them as an individual. I maintain that there is no such thing as normal. It's an artificial societal construct that man uses to defend himself from behaviors he does not understand.

    Children who think or behave differently from other children are shamed early on into correcting these behaviors and joining the aforementioned cookie-cutter society, growing up to become cookie-cutter adults with cookie-cutter lives. I have always wondered where the obsession with conformity and some bizarre, mythical standardized human personality came from. Likely, as with many other things, it's simply programming from a highly consumeristic society that paints everything in blacks and whites, the better to reduce people into simple demographics so they'll feel pressured to indulge in said consumerism. Human beings at their core are social creatures, innately wishing to be accepted by their peers. It is an instinct that originally served to strengthen herd cohesion and give us a greater ability to work as a team. Conform, society cries. Conform, pretend to be what you are not, put on airs. Or you will become a social pariah.

    You are bombarded quite literally ceaselessly by a world that insists you behave by an artificial standard they have developed. I think, to an extent, that this is exceedingly harmful. As likely as not, many of you who are interested in the subject matter of the site keep your gifts and interests a secret from everyone else. You have little choice, after all. The alternative is to be treated as eccentric and never to be taken seriously (at best) or to look forward to a future of electroshock therapy and solitary confinement in a padded cell, with only your straitjacket for company. It's sad that this is the case, semi-humorous hyperbole aside.

    Thankfully, society does seem to be moving somewhat away from its obsession with standardization and conformity, though not nearly enough to matter. Perhaps one day, people will actually be able to speak their minds without shame. Maybe even within our lifetimes. I don't hold my breath, however. Or I'd pass out waiting and be taken to the hospital, where hopefully an attractive, dark-haired nurse would get me back on my feet. That's the only thing that makes hospitals tolerable, after all.

    In any case, that's my question for you today, dear readers. Is there really an objective standard for normal? Ask yourselves whether keeping up pretenses is really worth it. To me, it seems like an awful lot of boring work.

    Tune in tomorrow/next week/next month/whenever I quit being lazy for more of my lunatic gibberings! Or not. Your choice, really. I'm pretty abnormal, and full of a lot of Eldritch Ruminations.
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