Drama over an article I wrote. It’ll blow over, but never for me. The vices of getting published.

Were judging you.

"We're judging you."

People will always label.

45-year-old conservative, stiff collar, shined shoes, trimmed mustache, a dozen people under your supervision at the office … meet 21-year-old punk girl, torn clothing, seven facial piercings, a mohawk, 12 credits of biology for fall semester at the local university.

Sympathy, disappointment, anger are all present as an article I wrote last year surrounds itself in drama.

It is a sad state of affairs: A profile I did of someone gave him/her a bad reputation that I did not foresee. The profiled person was unable to sign a lease because of a narrow minded landlord who read the article and said something to the effect of “everything you touch turns into a squat house.”

So there came sympathy.

No one seems to actually read the article. The profiled person did not even live in the house that the landlord refers to. Still, I got the story taken down by the editor so that no ensuing troubles would happen. I was so proud of that story too…

There’s the disappointment.

Later, I got another call from the profile person, vilifying me with outlandish claims like I never gave heads up that the story would be published. There was a photo-session for the story for Christ’s sake.

There were assaults that I did not know the profiled person well enough to profile him or her.

I don’t think  intimate details are necessarily required. It is a profile. An impression of a person, like a Claude-Monet painting. One takes the most interesting aspects of a person (usually not their favorite color and flavor of soup) and writes a summary as a part of a narrative.

I wrote observations exactly as I saw them. I made fun of my ignorance to punk culture in the article even pointing out aspects that I was not knowledgeable on. I merely pieced together what I witnessed  in (what I thought was) a humorous and light-hearted article.

I am not the devil. I did not foresee this ridiculousness. And I am sorry I labeled the profiled person as a certain sect of punk — I know how careful and with what emphasis punks spout self-labels. But the truth is, everyone is labeled. It is impossible to escape. I thought I did the article justice when I mentioned myself having trouble finding a “constricting” label to put the profiled person in.

I guess I am the only one who got the punchline. I am laughing a my own joke. At least I gave punks something else to be angry and frustrated with.

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~ by shawp on May 22, 2009.

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