In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “A True Saint.”
This is a post from three hundred years ago, but I really didn’t expect that I would be deserving of this great honor. Of course I’m not really deserving because who really is, besides Mother Teresa, St. Patrick and some others that are too awesome to name. I mean, if I really cared about whether or not I became a saint, I would completely not deserve it. Must be I did something right, because you guys made me one (or at least the pope did which is kinda funny since I’m not Catholic).
Aaanyways. Back to this saint business. I’m so glad that I get the chance to speak up for what is becoming an ever smaller group of people where I’m from. It’s the outsiders. With the internet and everything, you can find a connection with someone who shares your interests, so does that really make you an outsider? The thing about internet relationships though is that they are distant for the most part. I mean, it’s really exciting to meet other people who are as passionate for the same things you are, but when something cool happens where you live who do you turn to?
That’s where Saint Ricky comes in. I can always tell the outsiders. A friend of mine described them as strays. She says I attract them like a magnet. These are people (myself included) who are broken and don’t feel like they fit in anywhere. When I say broken, I don’t mean irreparably. I mean there is something inside them that makes them fear or avoid making connections with those nearby. Connections are fabulous, unless you feel like no one will understand what you’re going through. We live in an ever expanding connected world and yet feel all alone at home. It’s part of the brokenness. Connecting requires trust and when you’ve lost the ability to trust, it makes it that much harder to connect. I’m the guy for those people.
I think that every one of us has a contribution to make. Even the quiet little guy who sits in the corner wearing his gaming or movie t-shirt that sort of avoids any meaning conversations. It’s the girl who walks in and looks around, noticing she’s the only one wearing long sleeves in summer because she doesn’t want other people to notice the marks. It’s the differently abled kid who is all excited to meet new people, but doesn’t really have the social etiquette to realize when they may be getting a little to close to your personal space. I like those people. They are my kind of people. Those are the ones I like to go up to and say hi. Of course I realize I make get a blank stare or even a look of abject fear, but I don’t want them to feel alone in a room full of people. Mostly it’s because I don’t want to feel alone in a room full of people.
That’s sort of the paradox with me. I love to stand up in front of larger groups of people and I can talk and talk and talk. The problem is, after I come down from whatever platform I’ve been on and people expect me to engage in actual conversation. That means I’ve got to open up and be a bit more vulnerable. I’m not good with vulnerable. I’m not good with small talk. Big ideas expounded upon perfectly, no problem. Intimate conversations about my own life, I’m a bumbling idiot.
That’s why I relate to the broken people. Neither one of us is particularly excited about opening the books of our lives in rooms full of people who look like they have everything together. We can just find something to talk about that tells others about us, but not really about us. Let’s talk Harry Potter, or Star Wars or which version of D&D is the best. Let’s have a chat about strange art we’ve found. Or even about weird places we’ve been. Just don’t ask us to actually talk about ourselves. That’s where we get lost.
Thanks so much for making me a saint. I know I’m not worthy. The truth is…none of us are. So even if I never get to be St. Ricky, patron saint of outsiders, I am still glad I met you all.