It's goddamn weird, getting old. Maybe you, maybe your friends, start becoming respectable citizens, vested with authority and power. You become, to whatever limited extent, bosses, charged with the judging of others.
This made me think of this just now.
Most of the people I like talk a lot of trash. Are prepared to exercise judgment on the question of lime green leggings, too-short skirts, general capacity to irritate.
Now a bunch of them are trash-talkers with power. If they see somebody doing a crummy job they have the option of doing something about it. Depending on your attitude towards organizational loyalty, you could argue that they have the obligation to do something about it. Bad apples rotting the barrel, loose nails losing battles, whatever.
It's not a bad thing. They're not exercising that power on the basis of lime green leggings. Somebody has to be the decider.
It gives me vertigo. It makes me queasy. Some of that's my own childishness and irresponsibility. Some of that's my utopian dream of a world in which we're all naturally good and nobody is given any power at all over anybody else and all decisions are made by consensus. But there's something about the act of exercising power that freaks me out too.
When I have power, I don't just use it. I don't say, "Look, I have this power over you. I want you to do this for me and I will exercise my power to the degree I can to make it happen."
No. I think, "Want what I want. I should not have to exercise my power to make this happen. It is a sign of lack of grace in you that you don't understand that."
Which strikes me as grotesque.
I don't know.