Saturday, June 4, 2016

The Last Word On..., No. 4: Crushes

Over the years, especially from 2001 to 2014, I have been well-known for my crushes; in fact, some would say that I still am.  Some people have assumed that I had a crush on someone when I actually didn't, whereas sometimes even the real-life friend who was "the object of my affection" had no idea how I felt about her.  I was criticized for my crushes, both of the celebrity and real-life variety, as well, including ones about which most of you probably never knew I even had.  However, you may be surprised at how the whole crush thing got started...and parts of my crushing history you've never heard previously.

Okay, here come my usual three points.  First off: In my case, "crush" usually wasn't the right word. My "condition" has many traits, but, one of the most obvious ones is a tendency to obsess over things, people, places, etc.  You probably know that most of my previous obsessions were of the entertainment variety; what you may not know is that I was just as obsessed when there wasn't a lady involved.  When I was in elementary school, I was obsessed with a edutainment franchise that started off as a book series; if you know me, you can probably guess which one it was.  People said that I had a crush on the lead character, but I didn't; I actually was afraid of her, because I had reality confused with fiction, and I believed she was going to try to take over the world.  I didn't have the capability to put images on my desktop back then, but, even if I did, I wouldn't have put her on there.  My obsession with that franchise was no different than my fixation on my friends' Nintendo 64; there was no physical attraction there.  People with my condition tend to talk about the same things ad nauseam, which others would say is the sign of a crush...but, I never intended it to be one.  The same is true of my real-life friends today: Just because I hug, sit with, or regularly talk to or about someone of the opposite gender doesn't mean I have a crush on her.  Besides which, if I did, that would be a serious issue, as most of my female friends are currently married or otherwise spoken for relationship-wise.

Second off: I only kept the whole celebrity crush thing going because it entertained people.  I don't need to give a whole laundry list of my prior Hollywood flames; if you've paid the least bit of attention to my online postings, you have a good idea who they were.  If you knew me when I was in high school, you probably remember the day in March 2005 when I proudly announced to friends, classmates, and even teachers who my new celebrity crush was.  While I was made fun of for it--and who wasn't harassed when they were in school?--my friends and others thought the whole thing was entertaining, and had fun with it.  It wasn't just kids; my high school Spanish teacher would bring up my celebrity crush even when I didn't, and even bought me a magazine featuring my favorite actress as an out-of-the-blue present, saying, "I saw this and just couldn't resist."  Even well after that, when I got my first Verizon phone, I quickly put a picture of my Hollywood love on the main screen, and proceeded to show it to all of my friends at church; while some were unsure of who that woman even was, one of my friends had the best remark: "What would you do if you met her? You probably wouldn't even be able to speak!" Still, some people thought the whole thing was a problem, and many didn't mask their feelings one bit; I just brushed them off back then...but, now, I realize they were right.  I should have been like the singer P!nk in her song "U + Ur Hand": "I'm not here for your entertainment!" Seriously, even if it did entertain others, who knows what they were saying about me behind my back? I eventually realized that...but, it sure took a long time.

Lastly: My "crushes" have always been different than most other guys' for one very big reason.  My best friend in eighth grade used to get teased about being gay by some other kids because of his style of dress and different interests, but he would always refute it by saying, "Dude, I like girls." While I also like those of the opposite gender, my attraction has mostly been towards women instead of girls.  I've liked older women from a young age, and still do.  To me, people who are coeval and even younger tend to disgust me because of their immature habits, such as shooting off at the mouth without any regard to how they made the recipient of their words feel, or being prone to fits of anger, i.e., a notorious incident I heard about where someone I knew threw a milkshake at someone else.  Of course, people of the same age are all different, but, consider this: Of the few people I'm currently in contact with who don't like me--as most of my prior enemies have had zero contact with me in ages--at least three of them are around my age, and one is a bit younger.  Other than one case with someone in her forties who seems to have never left the seventh grade, I don't have that problem with significantly older folks, including those of the female persuasion.  In fact, regardless of age or anything else, I tend to get along better with women than guys, which may explain my attraction to them.  I don't want to be a womanizer or "skirt-chaser"--that's just wrong!--but, I do enjoy the company of my favorite ladies.  Now that I'm grown, females my age and even sometimes younger tend to be more like women and less like girls...but, they aren't always, as I know all too well.

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