I’ll never forget going to see A.I. Artificial Intelligence in the summer of 2001. I was with two of my very best friends, who were dating at the time, and while they loved to watch movies, they didn’t have the intense love/hate that I tend to feel for the creative endeavors of others. As the movie went on (and on), I could feel their annoyance, boredom, and general “WTF is going on?” as they proceeded to sigh, shift in their seat, and whisper shit to each other. Annie’s enjoyment = halted. The MOMENT that movie ended (and I was trying to muffle quiet sobs and wipe away tears) they started in. “How STUPID was that?! I don’t even know what it was about? Are you CRYING?! What’s WRONG WITH YOU?” “What’s wrong with YOU heartless, brainless idiots?!”, is what I should have said. Hindsight. Anyway, I muttered some nonsense and spent the drive home in silence, as they continued to tear the movie (and my heart) apart. Annie, you might ask, why do you care if other people hated a movie you liked? (Because I have a personality disorder?) And also, Annie, how did you actually LIKE A.I.?? And also, Annie, do you have a personality disorder?? (Maybe?) Listen, it was flawed, and overly long, and very polarizing, but it was also a touching, terribly sad story of a boy trying to find love and a home. The final scene, of little David finally, FINALLY, getting to have his best day ever, with his mom, at long last, giving him real love and affection, and then going to sleep (or dying?? I was always a tad confused..) next to her dead, cloned, body, absolutely destroys my soul. So, when my terribly shallow friends trash-talked, completely misunderstood, and practically defecated on something that moved me so deeply, it felt personal. It felt like a stab to the heart. And it has never stopped feeling like that, even now that I’m a grown-ass woman and should know better than to ever care what others think.
It’s like this shit becomes a part of me. When you attack it, you attack me, and that hurts like a bitch. I’ve read The Four Agreements. I know that number two is “Don’t take anything personally.” It seems an impossible task. Watching movies, listening to music, these are activities that are more enjoyable when shared, and hell yeah, if the person I’m with shares my opinion, it’s great. If I have to watch a movie with somebody who doesn’t like what we’re currently staring at, or turn on music in a car that somebody else hates, it utterly destroys it for me, and I’d rather just shut off the TV/ipod/radio/computer and sit in dead silence. Even if that person never says a harsh word. I know they don’t like it, and that fact alone fills up my thoughts.
I know everybody’s entitled to their own opinion and that makes the world go round, yada yada yada, but it sho’ hurts my feelings. It’s both super exciting and terribly crushing to be a creature with such passionate likes and dislikes. So hey, everybody I know, you better start liking all the same shit I like, or else we can’t hang out! Capiche? 😉