Returning the long way
Date – Unspecified.
Time – Unspecified.
He had a name, but he couldn’t remember what it was, not that it bothered him that much. He was walking along a road, which as far as he knew he had always walked. He couldn’t remember ever not being on this road, or not walking across this blighted landscape. It wasn’t much of a place to walk really, not much of a place but he couldn’t remember anyplace else. The land was rocky, there was no particular source of light, the sky was a dull and nearly solid gray. There were patches of fog, patches where the rocks were slightly higher, but the land was lost. It was as if someone had simply known that ground and sky were necessary, but hadn’t had enough enthusiasm to make anything else.
He somehow knew that he hadn’t been walking this road the whole of his existence, knew that he was going somewhere, but he couldn’t remember anything else. He couldn’t remember anything but this road, which was his existence at this moment. Oh, there was also the song, but there had always been the song. The song would always be with him, even if he couldn’t remember all the words, the tune would be in his heart.
“Monkey, monkey, eating cheese. I’m dancing with a walrus, if you please. The monkey likes to sing and play. It’s a monkey, monkey, monkey day.”
I’ve been seeing a few articles on the internet about people in polyamory situations being closeted at work. There are various articles, why you should be open, why you should stay in the closet, but I haven’t seen one that hit the nail on the head for me. The thing is, I can put my issue down to one sentence. Fourteen words, one coma, two phrases.
I don’t tell people what I had for breakfast, much less my relationship style.
Everything else I’m going to say here is just an extension of that idea. I’m a fairly private person, and one who collects ten times as much information a he gives out. I can give you personal details about 87% of the people I’ve ever met, and I’ve met a lot of people. I have great listening skills, so people talk to me. I also have a habit of asking just the right questions, so I gather a lot of data. Except I also understand how much of that data is any one persons’ business and as a result I rarely divulge much of anything I’ve gathered. The point is I don’t hand things out very much. I almost never share details, and my past is a clouded land of smoke, fog, and details that don’t match up if you try to assemble all the pieces together into a cohesive narrative.
There is a reason for that of course. They don’t fit, because I regularly leave out key details, like I was dating two women for a decade. That all three of us lived together for eight years, and that I acted as a housewife for seven of those years. That would bring the story into focus for a lot of people, but I don’t much care if people have a focused view of me or not. I manage to be likable and friendly in the now, and that’s all that really matters. Whatever else I do or have done is kind of irrelevant to the current situation. I also don’t discuss my love of cooking, or the joy I get at looking at Bosch and Bruegel’s strange-ass paintings or even the number of samurai movies I own. It’s not important that I once had to sword fight my evil twin from the mirror dimension on top of a speeding train either, so I rarely discuss that at work. What it all boils down to though, is that I am not a person who shares details of his outside life. I am very much a “Leave it at the door” kind of person in every sense. Try to ignore the things that put you in a bad mood and just do the job when you clock in.
As I say, I’ve noticed that very few of these articles ever paint the portrait in this way. It’s always presented as “You MUST tell people about you’re lifestyle because…” or “I can NEVER tell anyone about my lifestyle because…” it’s rarely ever “I don’t tell people anything about my outside life.” Thing is, I kind of quietly believe this is probably the reason most poly people don’t share it at work. They wouldn’t share if they were mono people living a mono life of regular mono dinner followed by mono sex and then mono sleep followed by mono breakfast. If pressed, yeah, I’d like to see more openness. People shouldn’t feel that they NEED to keep everything they do a secret. I would like to see more openness, but you shouldn’t have to wear it on your sleeve if you’d prefer not to be the poster child for an entire lifestyle. And you shouldn’t have to wear anything on your sleeve if you’d rather keep your private life separate from your professional life.
So that’s what all of this boils down to, my professional life doesn’t need to know what I’m up to in private. I don’t tell the people I work with much of anything, and who I have a relationship with and how that interacts is just another part of that situation.
I have this feeling like I should watch the Saw movies, seeing how they’re the modern equivalent of The Friday the 13th movies. One came out every year, they defined a generation of horror, they were both the poster children for that tired-ass “Everything Wrong With Movies Today!” argument that critics want to have on a constant basis and both would have been amazingly improved by the inclusion of Prince.
You can hear more about the Saw Franchise by listen to F This Movie.