“Imagine you’ve gone to a party where you know very few people there, and then on your way home afterwards you suddenly realize that you just spent the whole party so concerned about whether the people there seemed to like you or not that you now have absolutely no idea whether you liked any of them or not. Anybody who’s had that sort of experience knows what a totally lethal kind of attitude this is to bring to a party. (Plus of course it almost always turns out that the people at the party actually didn’t like you, for the simple reason that you seemed so inbent and self-conscious the whole time that they got the creepy subliminal feeling that you were using the party merely as some sort of stage to perform on and that you barely even noticed them and that you’d probably left without any idea whether you even liked them or not, which hurts their feelings and causes them to dislike you (they are, after all, only human, and they have the same insecurities about being liked as you do).)”

– David Foster Wallace, “Octet”

1 reply »

  1. Not knowing anyone is the opportunity to forgo discussions on the banalities of momentary life updates that seem to be a requisite of modern day etiquette and allow one to immediately delve into the more salient issues that reside at your brains forefront, like why headphones tangle themselves as if by some sort of magical trick by your conscience to make truly long for the music for which you are about to listen.

    It’s a shame more people don’t behave in this way at social events when most close acquaintances are not there…..

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