Who you calling “Weirdo”, Bub?
“Weirdo” is a reflex that needs fighting.
One whose justification all too often boils down to “Who Does That?”.
She does that. He does that. The Other, does that.
The reason for this being an issue is that falling into the habit of asking the question means falling into the shadow of the same question, only asked by others about you. Asking WDT requires on some level thinking WDT, and thinking WDT involves accepting WDT as a valid mode of inquiry, which means expecting others to regard you and your life through the lens of WDT.
The “Who” of WDT is used to distinguish the known (the WDT dee-voh-tee) from the unknown, the Other. WDT is just another way of breaking the world into Us and Them.
We do this anyway. We’re classification organisms, we seek to order the universe around us according to our individual peculiarities and preferences, so that we feel in control. So that we feel secure.
WDT, then, is just an extension of that natural classifying, right?
I would say wrong.
WDT solidifies the primacy of Us/Them distinctions, of segregational modes of thinking. It insinuates partisanship, bigotry, and the attendant hostility of those ideas into our daily lives through the words we say.
But it’s easy to change. It’s a straight swap of TLAs, IWW for WDT.
I Wonder Why.
For Socrates, wisdom began in wonder. For Neil Armstrong, wonder was the basis of man’s desire to understand. Buddhism teaches wonder as a fundamental part of spiritual health.
Wonder is a good word to have going through your head on a daily basis.
Why is a magical word. ’nuff said.
But using IWW (“IWW … he’s doing that/she’s wearing that/they’re shouting that/I didn’t do that”) gets to thinking about the thing being done/word/said/made/expressed, rather than the person doing/writing/saying/making/expressing it.
We can’t help but classify, but maybe better to do it with wonder and toward deeds, rather than through a one-way mirror and toward others who are, after all, like us.