Pick an apple. Put it in a barrel. Pick another. Put it in the barrel. Do this enough times and you'll get a bad apple. That's just the nature of life. So it is with friends.
"He's highly insecure," I said, remarking on a friend of ours who had went off on us for a very severe problem. What problem you might ask? Forget about a bear chasing you. Forget about a gunman holding a gun pointed at you. And forget about the terrorism happening in the world. The problem: Halloween party. My girlfriend asked why some of us needed to bring food and drink when other guests would only bring food or drink for the party. I know, first world problems.
Our gentile friend got really pissed off and berated my girlfriend. So she left our long-running group chat because she didn't want to read his rants. I wanted to attack him (verbally...ok...physically too) but I simply asked for the reasoning behind why the core group needed to contribute more versus others. His answer made complete and total sense: It was his party, he made the rules, if you don't like it, then don't come.
This obviously didn't go over well with us because we were his friends, and none of us would treat each other in that way, let alone go on a tirade about such a small and stupid issue.
Another in the group, I'll call him The Politician, talked to this reasonable fellow, and he professed that we attacked him, that we didn't appreciate his efforts for putting the party together, that he spent a hundred dollars of his own money (your choice bud), so the fact that we wanted clarification upset him. He wanted to disband the group chat, and the Politician said, "This isn't your group. Even if you disband the group, the rest of us will reform it without you." Our former friend shook his fists at the gods and lamented and demanded that this was his group. But eventually he decided to leave the group chat, and several days later unfriended me on Facebook. Oh, the horror!
So when we all came together to discuss this very important issue, I had made the statement, "He's highly insecure."
"Everyone has insecurities," The Politician said. And he's right.
But here's the thing. Our former friend is insecure as a person, a human being, maybe even as a man. Because I'm Chinese, he kept poking fun at me, saying I have a small penis. I guess it would be funny a few times, but he mentioned this to me almost every single time we hung out. I don't know why he was obsessed with my penis, but maybe he's a latent homosexual and has yet had the courage to come out of the closet. And this isn't a sneaky way of calling him a fag. That would be too good for him.
And every chance he had, he'd tell me if he was single, he'd have this girl in the bathroom, or that he's slept with many women, or that it was his girlfriend who had asked him out. Yes, he has a girlfriend. And, no, she didn't ask him out. Her culture is known to be very conservative, so she wouldn't have been the aggressor. Hell. American women rarely find themselves the aggressor. And that's the other thing. He continually makes fun of his girlfriend's culture.
I know. He ain't dat brite.
His girlfriend tried to help by saying that he has a lot on his plate. Sorry, my lady. But we are all adults. We all have a lot on our plates. And having a lot of plates let alone heavy ones doesn't give anyone the excuse to treat anyone like shit. This is a telltale sign of insecurity. People express it by attacking friends, loved ones, putting down friends, or covering them by drinking, binge eating, doing drugs, or unfriending people on Facebook.
I bring this issue up because insecurities are a norm for all human beings. I feel short sometimes. Other times I feel unsuccessful because I've yet to be published while others younger than me have found huge success in the publishing world. But I don't attack anyone because I feel this way. Eventually, these feelings will go away because that's the nature of being human. Waves ebb and flow. We wake from sleep, and sleep after being awake. Flowers open in sunlight and close after sun fall. Our feelings change, we get over stuff, we move on. Confidence isn't just the absence of doubt. It's the ability to go on while being mired in it.