Scripted Lives; 5 Acts, not a play…

Scripted Lives; 5 Acts, not a play…

All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players…
                                                                                   William Shakespeare

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Act 1…
The man sees an attractive, young woman sitting alone at the bar. He moves to a better vantage point where he can see her face clearly and throws her a sneak look accompanied by a soft smile. The woman smiles back without breaking eye contact (If she doesn’t, the man starts from square one with a different actor). It’s the cue for the man to make a move. He does.

Act 2…
The man engages in small talk about the weather in the last few days. The woman agrees with a few comments of her own. They seem to have an excellent time although neither is into meteorology. The man offers to buy her a drink… one more of whatever she’s having. They start laughing at everything. Being funny ceases to be a requirement after this point.

Act 3…
They leave the bar together and go to whoever’s house is closer. They have sex. The man whispers how beautiful the woman is into the nearest ear. The woman instructs the man to go faster… or harder… or however she wants it.

Act 4…
They discover common hobbies, feel safe and loved in each other’s arms, and decide to go for a romantic relationship. The man buys her presents, the woman makes frequent surprises to him. The love between them is so profound that jealousy starts ruling the relationship!!! (Really ironic this one… As when couples love each other, they should develop trust not jealousy). They decide to get married though. After all, marriage is a sort of guarantee that they won’t cheat on one another, right?

Act 5…
As they can’t stand each other after countless fits; the man and the woman go for a divorce. After the mourning phase (or the relief), each return to Act 1 separately and play the same game expecting different results.

Just like theatrical plays, the illusion called life relies heavily on inter-human relationships…

Now, stop here for a moment and think about how you interact with other people…

Is every decision you make, truly yours? Does every word you say, belong to you?

or

Do we make choices in our relationships with others and carry on upon pre-taught thinking?

Acting out scenes with pre-written scripts like some untalented actors?

There are various books on pick up lines out in the market for the socially-challenged… Pieces of script, just in need of personal fillers.

Imagine reading a book or watching a film for the thousandth time… knowing the ending, but still trying to enjoy it, hoping the outcome would be different. It’s sheer disappointment as it’s the same title with a different set of characters after all.

Why do we do this?

Why do we keep on living li(v)es of who we are not?

From Bending the Truth to Total Honesty

In our infancy, we were taught the wickedness of lying and that we should always be honest towards other kids/people.

Not much time passes before we learn that a society without lies is an utopia. You may have realized this at an early stage (if you’re smart enough) when your parents lie to you to protect you (or at least this is how they defend themselves). That’s the initial shock.

The next stage is in adapting to the society is conceptualizing the degree of lying; believing that white lies are actually necessary to secure a spot amongst friends or society. 

Imagine your best friend asking how her new, but horrible dress (let’s say it’s yellow) looks… I can almost hear you saying “Nice”, especially avoiding stronger positive adjectives or exclamations like “wow!” which we consider to be a form of lying. The use of the word “nice” and rolling your eyes to avoid further eye contact really helps you to remain besties. 

But, it’s still lying, isn’t it? What is worse is that you’re lying to your best friend…

So, what can be done to ensure not pissing your mate while uttering words of truth.

The answer is simple: Bending the truth! Or not having to lie but still sharing your true opinion/emotions. But how?

Okay, the first lesson is free: “Bending the Truth 101″…

All you have to do is to mumble something barely audible like “hmmm”, following a statement somewhat true : “I think, it would suit you much better if it was in blue”

The key phrase here is “much better”… as “better” doesn’t always mean good. However, it can make the transition from “terrible” to a plain “bad”. The real message you convey would be “Your dress looks bad!”

Another tip is to select words wisely. Here’s another case I once read in an ELT Activity book:

A little girl goes to her mother and asks if she could have ice-cream before dinner. The mother says no. Then, the little girl goes to her father to ask him the same question. The father asks her if she had asked her mother. The girl nods her head in confirmation. The father says “Then, I suppose you can have one”. The girl runs happily towards the ice-cream stash.

Does the girl have a hidden agenda? Yes

Is she lying? No.

 

Here’s a personal story; I used to live only a couple of blocks from my previous work place (which was on a very busy street) and it usually took me 3 minutes to walk to work. Nobody knew where I lived so whenever I was late for a meeting I would tell my boss that there was heavy traffic (which was indeed true although it never affected me).

No lying, no hard feelings…

As I got older, I mastered truth bending and got along pretty well with friends. But, it wasn’t enough. I started dreaming of a world of total honesty like in the Ricky Gervais movie “The invention of Lying”. 

Then, I decided to give it a try; being totally honest with everyone. I lost many friends but the ones who remained… they became my true friends because when you’re totally honest, they become the same and you begin to share the most intimate secrets with each other…That’s priceless…The connection becomes concrete…

You should give it a try to see for yourself. 

P.S: I do think this is not one of my best work… but it is to the point… and I admit I’m expecting a few good words about this entry nevertheless.