August 8th, 2003

red panda eating bamboo

I confess...

I have a problem with people who are emotionally extravagant.

(I consider this my problem and not theirs.)

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Disclaimer: Not a roundabout way of being catty, or an attempt at indirect communication with anybody

Do you have any confessions to make today?
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red panda eating bamboo

An attempt... draw some defining lines around the phrase "emotional extravagance."

In my brain, it's still a fuzzy concept of the "I know it when it irritates me" variety.

It's not just, or even primarily, about displaying emotions. It's also, or even more, about stuff like amplifying one's emotions, spending a lot of time and energy thinking about and talking about one's emotions, expecting/wanting other people to spend a lot of time thinking/talking about one's emotions, letting one's emotions be primary drivers of one's actions, letting one's emotions be primary determinants of the life story one carries around in one's head and tells others.

(All that stuff would be happening publicly/semi-publicly in order to count, since if it's happening only inside one's head, I wouldn't know about it and it wouldn't irritate me.)

Unpacking "amplifying one's emotions": In my experience, if I have a feeling of mild to moderate intensity, I can do three things: I can leave it alone, I can damp/suppress it (not snuff it completely, but lower its intensity), or I can increase it / whip it up. Amplifying an emotion would be deliberately increasing its intensity.

More as it occurs to me.