For one, I finished watching season 4 of Fringe just earlier today. Surprisingly decent, and the only questions I have now are what happened to William Bell, and whether the observers were as benevolent as they appeared throughout the rest of the series (Letters of Transit aside), but now I also have that excitement and interest renewed, but nowhere to go with it, as season 5 still appears to be an indefinite amount of time away. That's only contributing factor number one though, and as far as influence goes, it's more of a minor issue. Secondly, things about the furmeet. I find it actually really neat that I had more or less a direct influence in this comment being made, but the comments after it (at least the three that are there now) are... annoying. Back on the first page, Elezia said she preferred the 4th, but then, on the second page, seemingly suddenly remembered that she wouldn't be around then, and asked Dan if there was any chance it could be pushed back to the 11th. As for Daeryn, he / she simply said that they didn't want it to be on the 11th (before the possibility of having it on that date was even introduced), because they wouldn't be around then, and didn't want to miss out on the next furmeet. Fine, right? It's also understandable that they would post new comments stating their choice of date after Dan asked people to choose between the 4th and the 11th (the 28th is pretty much out of consideration now), but to approach the matter from an objective point of view, one way or the other, one of them won't be able to attend. Dan doesn't want to wait more than a week to book the party room, so although he didn't say it in there, the cutoff date for opinions is the 5th of June. Then there's sammypanther's comment of "sometime in july or august". Really? Rest assured, the furmeet will be sometime in August. Unless you're going to select one date or the other though, your comment is irrelevant. I probably wouldn't see it as so annoying if I didn't have these and other things on my mind, but I do, so... I do. As for the last one (that I can think of for now), I'm going to put it in a cut.
This is an email I sent to Dan last night:
In the same format I usually go with for these sorts of things (what you said bolded and in smaller text)...
I just thought that you might find it neat that someone thought to use one as a character in a movie and see what it looked like. When I see skunks in movies they're rarely portrayed positively, but just think it's a little neat that it was included--and really don't try to take it seriously.
So I'm not supposed to take it seriously either, right? I wish I could just flip a switch and make it that way. I do not know why I take things so seriously. Part of it is because I find it easier to assume people are being literal, than to attempt to decipher the actual meaning of anything they say. That's not to say I can't detect sarcasm and such, but that comes only after being around the person / people for long enough to get a handle on how they talk. Animated movie or not (it doesn't even have to be a movie), I'm going to take it seriously. I'm sorry if that doesn't make sense, but it's just as frustrating to me trying to explain that this is in fact how I am. As I said during the conversation where this came up, I understand your intent, but no, I can't just adopt a new way of thinking like that. As for movies of the actual animals, those are explained by all the things I told you about before. Remember? Anxiety, not meeting expectations, reminding me of where I once was, and such? That. I know you said you now understand why I don't want to see movies of snow leopards, but when you say things like that ("I [...] just think it's a little neat that it was included--and really don't try to take it seriously"), it sounds like you're saying "I find this works for me, so you should try to do the same thing yourself". I'm not saying this as an excuse, but I would if I could. To do so, however, is asking me to change my entire personality, and I neither know, nor want to find out where to even start with that.
You shouldn't consider something like Kung Fu Panda to be any kind of accurate portrayal of what Snowleopards are, really. There is nothing more similar to a real snowleopard than the most superficial. It should not threaten your perception.
Animals aren't going to be perfect, no. Only thing that should ruin your perception is if you learn something about them that you were wrong about, but you should see it not as destroing your perception, but improving it.
But I dislike Kung Fu Panda in particular for this reason because there will always be a lingering memory of seeing that movie floating about somewhere in my mind, and when it drifts into focus, I relive that anger and anxiety and sadness all over again, albeit to a lesser extent. As to how it ruins my perception, look up to what I said about taking things seriously again. I can't shake what the movie depicted, because like it or not, there was a snow leopard in Kung Fu Panda. Superficial representation or not, I can't just tell myself "Oh, it was some other animal", because before I said even the first word, I would know I was blatantly lying to myself. What do you suppose one of the other reasons is that I prefer to keep to myself, and stay at a distance from the normal flow of things is? Because this is how easy it is for my perception to become clouded. To give an example unrelated to snow leopards, why do you think I was so hesitant about whether or not other people should be invited to the zoo with us back in March of last year? Because if other people had come along, and something bad related to the zoo had happened because of / in regards to one of them, it would ruin my perception of going there. I was even hesitant to go see the snow leopards the first time Xion came with us, because I was worried he would make some sort of negative remark. I would get over it with time though, meaning that in theory, the solution to this is basic exposure - in the case of snow leopards, watch movies about them where people aren't involved, and it's just the animal doing whatever they were captured on video doing. Over time, that would help me get used to the fact that not all movies of snow leopards make them out to be the bad guy, but to go there would be to expose myself to such anxiety and panic that I do not know how I would react, so instead, I say I don't want to see the movies at all. Likewise, pictures? No, I'd rather not see those. Other media (stories, for example)? Same story, no pun intended. Seeing them at the zoo is the only thing I can allow, because if something bad happens there, I know it was with the real animals (with exception for something bad coming from somebody else there at the same time), thereby making it impossible to refute. The zoo will have pandas in 2013. Maybe (however unlikely) something will happen between them and the snow leopards, leading to the ultimate conclusion that Kung Fu Panda was a somewhat accurate depiction of that chain of events, and if it does, I will accept it, because it would have been real (unless it was proven that the zoo staff staged it or something).
You also said that you just want me to be who I am, so to end this message, I say that this is who / how I am. It feels more important in this case to explain how I see myself as being different from other people though, because otherwise, you might not know. I do want to put this to rest, but as I still don't know how long that'll be, or when it will happen, the next best thing I can say is thank you, once again, for your extraordinary patience. I really appreciate it.
This sentence here and everything following it is part of this entry as I'm writing it now. I'm still not out of this. I can see quite clearly that one of the common problems is that I never quite get to explaining the root of whatever's causing me issues, but I don't know how much longer I can do this for. Right now, I simultaneously want to come home from Heart and Stroke and get right into a conversation with him to go over that email, but I also don't, because I don't feel like I could handle another one right now. I'm not going to say I'm hurt, but I am drained, and tired of having to explain myself, but at the same time, I want to explain myself, because otherwise it looks like I'm blissfully unaware of the contradictions present in my patterns of thought, and also because, as noted in the paragraph above, he has said he just wants me to be myself, but it's like there's no two ways about it. Until I figure these things out, to be myself is to not be the same as him. So for now, the best course of action would be to go over that email. Maybe not tonight, so I can give myself a break, but tomorrow, perhaps, and, if needed, let him know that all I want is to know that he understands. Discussion on how he sees what I said can wait for a day when I'm feeling more up to it.
Other things aside though, I am now overdue for leaving for Heart and Stroke, so I need to be off. With any luck, the change in environment and specific task will help me to put these other things aside for the afternoon~