I’m Weirder Than I Let On.

I’ve decided to change this site up a bit. I’m the last person most people want to hear say that I’m going to loosen up a bit, god forbid, but the truth is I’ve been playing it safe.

This blog is, undoubtedly, a little weird for most people who come across me as a clinical therapist talking about serious subjects. What I’m trying to say, and I often seek to hide it from myself, is that I am even weirder than the articles I write, and I tame it down because I may be a professional therapist but my friends will tell you I have a marginal personality, putting it kindly.

I like to make fun of pastors and teachers because they are such a type. Social workers are also a type. College profs are a meme. Don’t get me started about freaking hipsters and their stupid matching leather boots and rolled up pants. Seriously, get some self-awareness. If you wear socks with sandals I’m not even sure what to say to you.

I am not a typical counsellor, ask any of my clients. I fought it for years before it finally dawned on me that I was always going to be weird, and I could keep fighting an impossible battle or try to leverage that crazy for it’s limited worth. The vast majority of society can fit into the acceptable 60-80% of normative personality types but the rest of us are freaks, and nothing you can say will change the fact that some people don’t fit in and perhaps never will. You learn coping skills, you grow up, you contain the beast; that’s it. Some parts of my personality are hardwired, and even while employing my considerable mental health toolbox I will continue to remain Scott Williams, himself. Weirdo. I didn’t even know I had ADHD until that became a thing, even then the stigma around mental illness kept many of us from admitting it ourselves.

I had a bit of an epiphany in the past couple months. I have been listening to an unbelievable podcast – Last Podcast on the Left about serial killers and cult leaders and hitmen and it is Master Class level profane, politically incorrect, completely fearless conversation. Anyone with even a modicum of propriety cannot help but be offended. I do not, apparently, contain a modicum. They push every boundary and every rule of decent, enlightened discourse, and if you can hack it, it’s mesmerizing. It is a podcast about serial killers and cult leaders and they will take absolutely every opening to say something inappropriate, as long as it’s funny.

Think how freeing that must feel. I can hardly imagine. Like most of us I have been bound by the social conventions and constraints I allowed myself to become enslaved to, and frankly I’m sick of it.

The podcast is hosted by three comedians and they are fearless. They will say whatever they want about whatever they want. It’s entirely offensive and I couldn’t stop laughing as I listened to them talk about The Iceman and Rasputin and Jim Jones. Entirely willing to demolish any social convention, eager to do anything for a laugh, they somehow manage to say the most vile things without glorifying the ugly or pandering to the whims of the politically correct emotional children who believe that taking offence is their entitled right. I am so jealous.

I’m working on an article right now called What Your Selfies Say About You. After thinking about it for a week I’m going to change it back to it’s original title – Why Your Selfies Make Me Hate You. It’s about the insane relationships between people who constantly take selfies of themselves and words like narcissism and insecurity and trauma. I have decided to let it be more in-your-face and rooted in where I am going in other areas of my life. My work-wife Dawn Taylor and I are doing a podcast this fall with Alouette Addictions and Douglas College where I virtually take on a Steve Colbert-ish personality and set of opinions about dangerous topics. It’s called Reality Therapy: Drugs. Culture. Life. The tagline is welcome to the argument. That Scott is very raw.

I do public speaking for a living and there are occasions when I put on my coat of mental health rage and say things that you won’t hear at your normal Parent’s Association Meeting. Dawn and I have been doing this for a decade together and if you ask us nicely we will do The Dawn and Scott Show. We’re going back there on the podcast and I can pretty much guarentee you won’t always agree with that Scott Williams. For the love of god we don’t want you to. You’re supposed to fall in love with Dawn and think of me as an opinionated and occasional asshole science geek who knows allot about bongs. When you were lost in the conversation we used our Jedi mind tricks to persuade you to release your warm and cuddly Best Friend Dawn pheromones.  People line up to talk to her. After most of our gigs there is a bit of a Q&A after-party and people come to me because I’m playing the role of the smart guy. I can talk your ear off about philosophy and edibles. People want to be in Dawn’s space.

People love Dawn. Literally thousands of people in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows know who Dawn Taylor is, and they know that Dawn is a self-deprecating institution in those cities. We go for coffee on a regular basis on work-related issues, and when we walk into a coffee shop I cease to exist. Every public space has people who know and love Dawn. Every damn one, it’s nauseating. She’s the nice one, I’m the weird one. We will often do 30+ gigs a year. No one likes a hitter, Dawn.

It’s a role I play that lets me be more honest. Take away the convention and the fear of hurting your feelings, someone who will fearlessly tell you something that makes you ponder can really make a difference, or at least make you think. The tougher I can be on you the better it gets. That Scott will say what you are thinking but are too wise to actually say out loud. He’s controversial and talks with way more confidence than we Canadians are comfortable with. When I am playing myself during the Dawn And Scott Show I am prone to say outrageous things. It’s hard to describe to someone who hasn’t seen it in person. I’m hoping the podcast will allow you to tune in to that part of the floor show, it’s incredibly fun and comes with special guests.

So I’m going to take the gloves off. I have relatives and pastors and people who are temperamental who read this, and I love you but it’s way more fun when I get to be the weird Scott Williams. You’ll forgive me or you won’t. I may shrug on that coat for a while here, I have 58 drafts in my WordPress folder that I haven’t released for several reasons, but one of those reasons certainly was that they are a little racy for this forum. (Nathan – if I die there are 58 drafts in that folder)

And seriously, deal with your selfie issue. It makes you look like a douche.

 

2 thoughts on “I’m Weirder Than I Let On.

  1. Great post!

    It reminds me of conversations I’ve had with myself and shared in posts I’ve written on my blog.

    I’m one of those people who perceives themselves as being a freak and has tried to hide my freak to fit in (and repeatedly failed because I don’t think I really wanted to succeed). What I’ve finally figured out is that I’m less of a freak when I let it show than when I try to hide it as I become stilted and awkward when hiding it which makes me even weirder and uncomfortable to be around.

    Other people rarely perceive us as we perceive ourselves and vice versa – so those people whom you perceive as the vast majority who adapt and fit in to normative personalities, they may just be better at hiding their freak, or you’re too busy thinking about your own freak and hiding it to notice theirs (although your profession in theory would negate that).

    Selfies show you how wonderfully freaky everyone is. Perceiving selfie-takers as douches is a normative view and is regularly encouraged by the media, society, pop-psychology, etc, as the correct view to adopt to such a thing.

    Q: Who is more narcissistic, selfie-takers or those people who think they’re right and righteous about hating selfie-takers?

    I’m not a selfie-taker, btw, but I did experiment with it to challenge my dismissive attitude about selfie-taking, and it was fun and funny to do it (after I got over the embarrassment of doing it). I stopped doing it once I’d learned what I needed to learn from it – which was that my bias about it was wrong.

    Why did I have that bias?

    When you perceive yourself as a freak who must hide their freak, and you resent having to hide your freak and/or resent your own freak, you tend to end up hating people who don’t hide their freak.

    When you allow yourself to express your freak, and get more comfortable doing and being that freak – your perception of others changes. Live and let live becomes more easily and naturally doable, and less of something you say to sound good while not really practicing what you’re preaching.

    I love your individual style of self-expression and look forward to reading your freak-unleashed posts. One tip: If you allow yourself to say whatever you want to say, it helps to give up trying to control how others react to you and what you’re saying, and to allow others to react the way they want to react to it. Some people enjoy being offended – that’s their freak.

    Best wishes, and, as the South Koreans would say when encouraging others – Fighting!

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