My napkin of yesterday, where I illustrated and talked about my having not had a drink in 20 years and the resulting secrets, led to, ironically enough, people telling me their secrets. I am always honored when friends (or strangers) tell me stories of their lives that they are not accustom to telling. I like knowing they trusted me, and honestly, it’s energizing to hear secret stories, don’t you think?
The funny thing about secrets is that oft times you are torn about them. You want to keep it secret, you are DESPERATE to keep it secret because, well, what would people think if they knew. At the same time you yearn to let the secret out. You would feel so liberated if you could just let it be known that you love to dance naked in the backyard when no one is around. And then, after the liberated freeing feeling, you would revert and be mortified that you let it out. It’s how we are with our secrets, isn’t it.
The Consistent Continuum
Perhaps the best we can do is do our best to have the public us and the private us be the same. I don’t mean the same level of exposure, it’s fine to have private elements to your life, whether it’s backyard naked dancing or something else. But I mean who you present yourself to be, at whatever level, should be on an honest and consistent continuum of self. For example, if you are an anti-gay crusader who spends time in men’s bathrooms soliciting gay sex, you are not on an honest and consistent continuum of self.
In other words, are you being an actor playing a part, or are you, most of the time, being a real person being you?
Drawing and commentary by Marty Coleman
Quote by Nishan Panwar
Here is a picture of one of the people who confided in me yesterday. This is posted here with their approval.