I’ve finally concluded I was the ultimate trash talker growing up.
For example, a fairly typical encounter would go something like this: I’d be talking to some guy, and all of the sudden he’d get mad at me and want to take me out with a bunch. I was almost always surprised when this would happen, because it would come so quickly
I thought all I was doing was joking around with the guy, but somehow I must have joked too far, and bam he’d want retribution. It always seemed to take place with guys older and tougher than me.
Most of the time I could get out of it by just shutting up. When the guy’s face would turn red and look blown up like a balloon, I knew I had gone too far. Sometimes it didn’t work, and I’d find myself having to physically defend myself. With tough guys you don’t usually win those encounters, especially with the type of guy who is wound too tightly.
Today, in sports we call joking and teasing “trash talking”. Athletes know that the mentally weak players fall apart when they’re teased too much. That’s why they tease -trash talk – the opposition. They know these emotionally fragile players will fall apart during pressure packed games.
As I grew up, I realized I wasn’t the only trash talker around. When I got married and had children, I found out that children are trash talkers too.
I don’t care who you are, children can get under your skin, if you’re an overly sensitive person. Children point out your weaknesses all the time. Often times, they’re obsessed with how big our noses are, and how big our ears are, and how an eye points in just a little bit.
They also try to get your goat by saying: I hate you, I don’t love you, shut up, I’m never going to talk to you again. They also say they’re going to run away and then hide in the closet or behind the drapes. They cry in public places.
Like the tough guys who couldn’t take my joking and teasing, I realized that if we can’t take that kind of talk and behavior from our children, we ARE too thin skinned. Just like in sports, it’s a symptom of how weak minded we can be.
I’m not trying to put someone on a guilt trip. As an adult, I’ve had my own failings at times with this issue. Over the years, I’ve really worked hard to keep my cool.