“If you say gullible real slow it sounds like oranges.”
Guuuuu liiiii buuuuuull crap! That one slipped right by me. Damn you, Kelvin Wade, for posting that one on Facebook, just when I was beginning to trust you!
It’s not like I surrender my trust very easily either.
I have a real fear of being deceived. I have a hypothetical reoccurring nightmare. One of the sheep I count on my numerous sleepless nights suddenly turns traitor. In my dream, he’s watching me and I notice that for a sheep, he has incredibly large eyes, ears and glistening sharp teeth.
At first, when I inquire of his large organs, he tries to make excuses: “All the better to see and hear me with.” As he opens his large mouth (I quickly deduce) to eat me for dinner, I grab him and we wrestle to the ground, and his sheep costume he was wearing falls off and covers my eyes. The wolf howls hysterically as I try to remove the wool from my eyes, but as much as I try, it does not come off. I lie there, unable to see, terrified that at any moment the evil deceiver will devour me whole and there is will be no ax-man/hunter to come to my rescue.
Back in high school, I was a bit of an airhead. It didn’t help that I had the blond hair to fit the stereotype. I would buy just about anything anyone would tell me. If I had been asked, I would have gladly run to the store to buy some elbow grease or to go with some “friends” on a snipe hunt. I was left holding the bag on way too many occasions, my face turning beet red as I heard the snickering in the distance and realized that I’d been had!
There have been other times as I traversed through life that I had been sucked into the latest belief, idea, craze or promising relationship. Afterwards, like a one night stand, I would feel so ashamed and disgusted with myself, wondering how I could have been so stupid. Now, however, having survived the airhead era with a few scars, there is nothing I hate more than someone thinking I’m stupid.
So I started a war on stupidity. I stopped being so gullible, and questioned everything I was told. I soon discovered that I had taken on way more than I could handle and this was not going to be an easy battle. Stupid had gone viral.
From creams that claim to make you look 20 years younger or melt away belly fat, religious or political promises and rhetoric, emails from Nigeria promising you lots of money, conspiracy theories, bank imposters calling to verify your information, faux surveys and polls, fake internet relationships, flattery and I love yous, there are just too many cons out there these days. Have people all knocked out a few of their brain cells, thrown on a blond wig and started spilling out stupid? I’m not sure what I find more despairing: the people instigating the scams or the ones buying them.
Having fallen prey to more than one wolf in sheep’s clothing, I have turned skeptic to it all. Not just a normal cautious and analyze everything extremely carefully before I come to a conclusion type of a skeptic. More of a lying awake in the middle of the night because you told me you had to work late, but I what I imagined you were really doing is taking a private jet, flying your model looking secretary (even though you don’t have a private jet or a secretary) to Venice where you had had a romantic dinner in a gondola while making love in the moonlight over and over again and arrived home just a ½ hour later than normal — that type of a crazy skeptic.
I’ve become so afraid of being made a fool of, I might be taking this incredulousness a bit too far. Sure, there’s a whole lot of wool out there and plenty of people who want to pull it over your eyes, and it’s always good to be guarded. (I have absolutely no desire to go back to my gullible blond high school years). It’s probably about time though for me to let down my guard just a tiny bit. Being too much of a skeptic can make you miss out on real love, friendship, trust and hope in yours and others’ futures.
I’m working on it.