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Why is it So Hard To Talk to People Who are Just Like Me, So Easy to Talk to Those with Whom I have Nothing in Common?

Maybe the people who live in the room with me it is too close for comfort and talking we need to keep each other at a distance? The guy who keeps going into my bed when I’m at work. He knows I know. I know he knows that! So if we were to actually talk…what would happen? We might come to blows? While the Chinese sage who lives in New Jersey — he and I get on famously talking about the unity of action and knowledge in the works of Wang Yang-ming!

Or maybe once I try to talk with the lady who is always pouring out water on the front steps even though I’ve told her not to — once I try to talk to her the most minor differences between us — I wear New Balance sneakers and she wears either dress shoes for Church on Sunday or floppy slippers the other six days of the week — they loom large as archaic colossal statues blocking out the sun of our shared humanity. While when I speak with the Viennese flaneur who lives in a castle the small differences between us — castle vs. apartment building, leiderhosen versus jeans from Lucky — because they are so large it would make no sense to talk about them they in fact become insignificant and he and I — the Archduke I mean — talk of life and death, planting and harvesting, the nursing of infants and losing one’s self in an ancient text or a moment or a dream of the future.

But perhaps it is not easy or hard to talk ever because who I am is talking louder and more clearly than my words ever can. And everything that needs to be said — that could be said — want it or not — is being said loud and clear every moment.

To everybody!

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