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In light of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington DC, this opinion almost seems less paranoid and more an abject life lesson. My own personal outlook on life has suddenly enveloped the entire nation. In New York Minute, what I considered my cynical attitude, was suddenly proven to be correct, for the most part.

Oh yes, people turned right around to lend a helping hand to their neighbor and strangers, but I question how long that helping hand will be extended. Already some Arabic Americans have been killed or attacked because they wear turbans, or look like they come from the Middle East. Our governing bodies have discussed civil rights as something we must be willing to give up for our own safety, and people are easily sent into a panic.

I am a natural born cynic, just as I am a natural born homosexual, and neither my sexuality or my cynicism will change. Perhaps, one day, I can get over my cynicism. I've already embraced my sexuality.

Natural Born Cynic
A Gay Opinion 1/01/01
by R.A. Melos

I'm a cynic, pure and simple. I barely remember a time when I didn't see or expect the worst of any given situation.

My ex-lover, Mr. Ex, was the first person I remember meeting in whom I saw the good before the bad. He is also the only person I trusted completely, thus opening myself up to a level of emotional hurt I never knew existed.

I recently heard and interview with Jim Carrey, the actor who brought Dr. Suess' Grinch to life, justifying his characterization of the Grinch by saying someone can be hurt to a point where they come to a fork in the road, and they can either go straight ahead, or veer off on another path.

I took the cynical path long before meeting Mr. Ex. He showed me there could be a world where everything is wonderful, before he showed me his true hurtful nature. His actions resulted in my reaching a new level of cynical bitterness heretofore unknown to me.

Thanks to Mr. Ex, I truly, openly, expect the worst from absolutely everyone on the planet. I always knew people had hidden agendas, but now I look for and expect the duplicity from everyone.

I'm not saying Mr. Ex took something positive and turned it into a negative. On the contrary, I always expected the worst, but now, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt the worst exists. If anything, Mr. Ex taught me not to be open and trusting of anyone, ever. Ironically, it is that lesson which makes it possible to trust him. Of course, since he is out of my life, by his choice, he can't take advantage of my trust.

So now I go through life meeting people and knowing they are never what they seem. People, as I've always said, are scum. Now this doesn't make people less desirable as a species. Hard as it may be to believe, knowing you can never trust anyone makes relationships, of all types, easier to handle. Since trust can not exist, you can eliminate the illusion of love.

I'm not talking about love not existing, because I know it does. I know love exists on many levels and in many ways, but the illusion that comes with it, the perfect mate, the white knight, the great provider of emotional security, simply is a figment of your imagination and nothing more.

Knowing this, the fact your mate will never be perfect, your white knight has tarnished armor, your image of emotional security is built on a fragile foundation, can be a great relief. Once you accept this illusion as such, you can look at others, especially your mate, as they truly are, and then decide if you can accept them as human scum. If you can look at someone you love, see them as they really are, and still want them in your life, you've overcome one of life's greatest challenges.

Of course this can only occur if you've already looked in the mirror and accepted the same of yourself.

Maybe all of this is why I'm becoming more musically inclined. Not as in wanting to be a musician, but as in hearing the music and overlooking the people. It's a defense mechanism, I know, but it's very effective. I'm tired of investing even a moment in becoming infatuated, or otherwise romantically interested in anyone, and, in spite of biological desires, would rather just have fun.

Fun, to me, can be anything from listening to music to going to and amusement park, to walking my dog.

One of the most enjoyable times of my life, aside from the times I spent with Mr. Ex, was in 1986 when I spent several weeks in South Carolina with one of my closest friends. Actually, it was with several friends, but one I am especially close to.

A vivid memory is that time, and it gives me great pleasure to remember it still. It was a time of complete inner peace and emotional freedom. Since that time, only Mr. Ex gave me those feelings.

As I write this CBS-FM radio news is already reporting the first shooting of the new year, a murder, and the death of some senator.

Oh come on! Don't deny the cynical irony of this, I can't. So, as I lay in the safety of my bed, in the early hours of the truly new millennium, my cynicism is completely reinforced and I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, even the universe enjoys a good cynical moment.

Now, turn on your radio, plug in your headset, slip in that CD, and have fun. I am.

As for Mr. Ex, I know him for the destructive force he can be, and the great teacher he is, so how could I not love someone so awful and so wonderful at the same time? Oh yes, I know that sounds like spin doctoring, but in my own cynical perception of the world, all of it makes perfect sense.

If you're a cynic as well, you understand. If you're cynically challenged, go out and find a cynic to explain this to you.


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