"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."
-Christ of NazarethPeople Do Things To Be Things
So, the other day I was there with my friends, in a park. Being homeless, I had slept in this particular park before, and in that instance had been awoken by police officers the next morning who had taken down my information and warned me that I was not allowed to sleep in that park.
One day I was in the local market, selling copies of my artwork. One person who was very interested in picking up a set of all the ones I had on me confessed that he didn't have any money, but asked me if I'd like to trade him for some Acid. Being the loveable psychonaut that I am, I happily agreed, and gave him four photocopied peices of paper for two chemical-soaked peices of paper.
(I won't go into the details of the trip, but it was damned good Acid. We're talking real LSD here, none of this 2c-* stuff. Not that I dislike phenylethylmines.)
As the night went, though, granted that I was up and awake and flying all night, people kept asking me if I'd be sticking around long enough for me to watch their things. I didn't really have any plans except to chill in the park and dance, so I happily agreed. As time went on, things kept piling up and up, and people would go... But not come back.
By the time 5am rolled around, I was surrounded by three sleeping bodies (one of which had also been asked to watch things, two who didn't care if they got caught sleeping in the park) and a slew of bags, trinkets, and even a bicycle. Having spend hours and hours taxing my body, I started to grow weary, and, with the LSD beginning to wear off, I began giving more and more contemplation to sleeping in the park with my companion, the one who had also been asked to watch things. Just as the first hints of pre-sunrise blue started to breach the horizon, I propped up my bag to use as a pillow, and passed out.
In what seemed like mere moments later, I was awoken by a soft kick to the boot. I opened my eyes, and much to my chagrin, there was a police officer standing over me. I sat up, and was shocked to find four of them! They had come in three cars!
Each of the four of us who had slept in the park was being taken care of by a different officer. Mine pulled me aside and asked for my identification. I gave him my health card and offered my birth certificate, to which he declined. I referred to him as "Sir" and "Officer". When he asked me a question, I politely and dutifully answered in full detail; he asked me my name, and I offered both my legal name and my alias, and even offered to spell it for him. I showed him all my tattoos and identifying markings, et cetera, et cetera. He apologized for the hassle, to which I told him I understood, that he was just doing his job.
The four officers went back to the cars with our respective IDs. During this time I was informed by my friends that we were getting ticketed; a $125 fine! Just for sleeping in the park!
After a moment passed, the officers came back, each with a peice of idenfication and a peice of paper. The officer assigned to me waved his hand away from the others, and handed me both. I opened the ticket, and the first thing I noticed was that my last name had been spelled wrong. He then said to me, "Sorry about all this, but I've got to go through all the procedures and everything." I went to absolve him again, but he continued, "But if you'll look there, you'll see your last name is spelled wrong. You don't have to worry about it."
The others all recieved $125 fines. I got off scott free.
People do things to be things. In this particular instance, this officer went to college and law school to get a job with the police. He wanted respect, he wanted authority... He wanted to be treated like an Officer. I treated him like an officer, and he treated me like I wanted to be treated; a good, honest, under-the-radar punk kid.
People do what it takes to be doctors or firefighters 'cos they want to be treated like lifesavers. People act like gangsta thugs 'cos they want to be treated like they have power and personal freedom (and in this society, having money does
mean having power and personal freedom). People become soldiers because they value unity and they want to feel like they are a part of something big.
Nature and Nurture arise together to form in a person's mind what they think is Really Cool, and then the more enterprising of us go off and do whatever it takes to be Really Cool. When you disrupt a person's fantasy-life by treating them how they don't want to be treated, animosity quickly builds up and said person will (in the instance where they have the option) take effective measures to remove you from their life, or (in the instance where they don't have that option, or don't realize they have that option), seek to force you to empathize with their position by treating you in a way that you don't like to be treated.
It doesn't feel good, does it? Then why are you doing it?
However, when you act in a way that is congruent with someone's fantasy, you have nothing but all to gain. You stand not only to inherit the benefits of what someone in their particular position and disposition has to offer (in my case, an 'accidental' misspelling), but also, they will be more likely to indulge you in your fantasies.
Mahatma Ghandi once said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world." Be fantastic, and the world will be fantastic to you.
Take it from Jesus.