Thursday, January 3, 2019

Microstory 1009: Ira

No, Bertha didn’t say that, did she? What a jackass. I’m glad she finally recognizes how terrible she is with people, but she’s living in a nightmare world if she thinks I am too. It’s true, I read and watch a lot of science fiction, but I’m smart enough to know the difference between a character, and a real person. Fiction is a great resource for understanding how other people work. Simply seeing that it’s possible for a separate individual to have a different perspective than one’s own can be enough to fuel your empathy for others. Writers take a lot of liberties when it comes to characterization, but just because the character is made up, doesn’t mean we can learn nothing from their experiences. Each character is created by a writer, and at the very least, that writer is drawing upon their own lives, and those of the people they know. So, let’s just assume every character a given writer comes up with is essentially the same person, because that writer somehow managed to become successful enough to get their work out there without anyone noticing how one-dimensional their stuff was. There are still thousands upon thousands of other characters in the world, created by different writers. Compound that with the fact that most that are created by the same artist are going to have different perspectives. Now compound it with the number of people who contribute to that characterization: writing partners, producers, actors, editors, etc. A lot goes into making a piece of performance art, or a written work. There’s a lot more collaboration for the former, but that doesn’t mean the latter type doesn’t hold its own lessons. Plus, any given story is going to be interpreted differently by each audience member, and now with the internet, it’s not only easy to share these thoughts with others, but helpful. I’m doing just fine in this world. I have lots of friends, and though I probably couldn’t have counted Viola as one of them, I’ve still been impacted by her death. Sometimes I use nomenclature that makes it sounds like I see the people around me as characters, but that’s but an extension of my love for art, and does not reflect an indifference to them. Like I was saying, I didn’t know her well, but I did know a lot about her. Socially, she was a lovely person, who was nice to most people. If she didn’t like you, she surely had good reasons, and that should give others pause when considering their own feelings towards you. She loved people, and always seemed to try to give them the benefit of the doubt. She was a lot like me in that way. I try not to judge people until I know more about them. I’ve known Bertha most of my life, which is why I can tell you with absolute certainty that she has a lot of growing up to do. I know I talked a lot more about myself than Viola, but I hope it helps. I’m looking forward to reading your story.

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