Monday, September 25, 2006

Who the heck are 'they'?

I feel rather serious today, hence this rather serious subject….

Whenever you've wanted to do or say something unconventional in your life, have you ever had someone tell you (or told yourself) : "You'd better not - what would 'they' think?'

Who the heck are 'they' and perhaps, more importantly, why the heck should you care what 'they' think? The illusive group, otherwise known as 'they', have featured prominently in my life.

I've made many decisions based on what 'they' would think. I contemplated dancing on a table once just because I felt like it (not because of the amount of alcohol that was imbibed, promise!). I didn't because of what 'they' would think.

When I wanted to wear a dangerously short, tight, skirt to an event (Ally McBeal was all the rage then), I didn't because I was afraid that 'they' would disapprove.

The skirt, like Ally, is SO not the new millenium so I can't possibly wear it now which means I just wasted good money on it.

In my mind's eye 'they' vaguely resemble a bunch of infuriating relatives. Its like having a group of old-fashioned, annoying aunties sitting on your shoulder everywhere you go, admonishing you - a truly terrifying thought! They look something like this except they're all Indian:

What is it about being human that makes all of us SO very susceptible to other people's opinion of everything we say and everything we do? We worry about other people's idea of us even if they happen to be nameless and faceless. It is a constant struggle not to take any notice of everyone else and follow our chosen path in life - even if it means that it’s a route nobody else has taken or will approve of.

This means that if your goal in life is to be a tattoo artist than a tattoo artist you should be. How horrible if you spent an entire lifetime trapped in the life of, say, an accountant when all you want to do is to use people's skin as canvas (okay, that sounds a pretty gross but you get the idea).

I think its doubly hard in Asia where pleasing your parents and fitting into the community are considered virtues of the highest order. How do you tell your parents, who want only the best for their darling son/daughter, that their child's sole aspiration in life is to be an RTM background dancer? (alright, bad example but there could be people out there who want that, couldn't there?)

Despite my best efforts not to, I still catch myself thinking about 'them' and their opinion . I suspect that the only way I'll finally stop is when I cease to worry about what others think of me. This will probably happen only when I myself am an annoying old aunty telling young people what to do.....sigh!


DolphyN said...

*groan* i know exactly wat u alwiz caught by that 'what are they gonna think when i...*fill in the blanks*...' and its sooo annoying at times, especially when i want to do something reallly bad....but in the end i dont do it cuz i keep on worrying bout wat OTHERS think.

sigh. life is such a b*tch sometimes.

keep up the good writing...its one of my fav place to come to when i need sumthing to read on9!! =p

Trisha said...

Thanks for the kind words DolphyN!
We aim to please : )

I'm SO relieved that you've owned up to worrying about 'them' too coz after I wrote the entry I wondered if I sounded like a loon... constanly worrying about the opinions of the imaginary collective called 'them'.

If you happen to find a way to shut 'them' up - do let me know!