Today I will pick through someone else’s things. Because I know myself.
I know these people too; they are not strangers to me. And yet, the “how we live” phenomenon is very clear and separatist.
It’s the reason why you should live with someone before you marry them.
What if they sing old 80’s love songs with their mouths filled with toothpaste, dripping and spewing a fine mist of milky-white bubbles all over the mirror and cabinets, every night, just before going to bed? What if you can’t stand that?
What if it’s cute and funny at first, but eventually tears at your mind until you can no longer stand the pain of harnessing your rage?
I HATE YOU! I HATE JOURNEY! I HATE TOOTHPASTE SPITTLE ALL OVER THE BATHROOM MIRROR! YOUR ARE NOT THE ABSOLUTE WORST PERSON I HAVE EVER KNOWN, BUT YOU ARE NOT SOMEONE I CAN STAND!!!!
It’s that simple.
Of course, it’s not about the toothpaste. Or the song. Any more than it was about the cake, or the kneeling, or the bus seat, or the hijab.
It’s about something so deep, your mind can’t identify it without a lot of help. So it becomes about the thing we CAN talk about. The thing that sometimes makes no sense at all. And yet, it is the thing, the straw, that breaks the camel, the wedding, the lunch counter.
We are all breaking a little more each day. We are all crying out for knowledge.
If I knew you sang 80’s songs every night before bed, if I had time to ingest that in my decision-making, and appropriate resources to help me use the knowledge constructively, I might not have had to set fire to your mosque.