Dress codes are pretty banal things.
Just telling people what to wear.
But the reasons for having a dress code,
and what to do when somebody defies it,
that’s not so banal.
And yet, it is banal.
Just wanting people to do the thing you told them to.
You know that flashy clothes aren’t necessarily distracting in the classroom or encouraging of disrespect for adults.
You know that not placing certain things somewhere on your skull doesn’t cause random unhinged behavior or create vanity for one’s appearance.
You know that uniforms for certain jobs are a little bit over the top.
But to not enforce them would feel insulting.
To the desire to keep things orderly.
To the need to call attention to disrespect.
To the part of you that wishes for that strange mysterious something…
which causes intelligent persons to conduct themselves well.
The spice nags at you and it feels like….
common sense flowing out of your body,
into the skies.
Have you ever been in a situation where you told on somebody,
or acted stuck-up toward somebody,
or borderline persecuted somebody,
as they did something which felt like…
their own ugly version of “good vibes” and “common sense”?
It would be dishonest to insist that you never have.
You must perform this exercise for me.
If you want the world to change.
I will give you an example.
Online games where people get reported for what they say in chats.
Obviously, it’s not foolish or egregious to report somebody for saying something obscenely hateful.
But there are still times you have to navigate the spectrum of rudeness.
There are messages somebody could send you which don’t quite quality as rage-fueled obscenity.
Slang words, funny insults, wacky exaggerations.
Gameplay style mockeries, character selection mockeries, username mockeries.
Little outbursts that embody the banal kind of resentment one feels when playing a video game against or alongside someone else.
The sensation that this is part of a game and not real life seems to massage one’s deepest forms of anger, and yet, makes one comfortable enough to unleash that well-honed vitriol.
It’s not quite so different when it comes to dress codes,
or other formalities and gimmicks that make up your idea of public decency.
Witnessing somebody throw away the attire imposed onto them
is like watching someone refuse to simply play by the rules.
Or play in a defiant way that seems to defy the whole point of having them.
(Like running away too much, or team up too much, or distracting someone on the couch!)
It’s so easy, to simply conform to something as humble as how to dress up.
And to not do that feels quite high effort, quite huge hearted.
You feel like you can feel exactly what the rebel is up to
when they act so fucking casual and quirky.
Perhaps you’ve spent much time thinking about how to make a world where parents don’t force a child to look a certain way.
Perhaps you’ve also been hypnotized by how banal and humble it feels to expose someone’s terrible-feeling vibes when they were only….
just kind of venting and being silly and passive aggressive with you.
You feel you are the one who can sense it.
The warm and pleasant sensations behind the behaviors and demeanors you utterly loathe.
That you are on the right side of that intolerably spicy vibe.
That you are a humble and calm step above what it means to be an “asshole”.
What a powerfully serene feeling to act upon. What a state to invoke yourself within.
You must learn to be disenchanted by it.
You could learn to get satisfaction from telling on the villain in a single player story, but it never feels like enough to simply simulate good-feeling social actions.
Though perhaps if you can understand why that’s never enough,
and the way in which you crave a more raw feeling comeuppance against real, actual people,
you can use games where you DO get to taunt others IN THE GAME
rather than in the chatroom
by just dancing and shit
as a much better way
to quell the need to embarrass someone
for doing anything at all.
It’s hard to resist the urge to call attention to mockery in its most sly feeling form.
It feels like seeing someone dress up as a jester and playing pranks on people
and doing absolutely nothing about that.
How very fucking pure of heart it is to fight someone when showing off a defiant look.
“Purity of heart” is the thing those without such obligations are closer to actually defeating once and for all.
“Purity of heart” is something best left to roam free in virtual arenas.
“Common sense” is that which needs to be restrained.
“Nice vibes” are the hardest thing to bind in chains.
But I intend on making it happen.
I intend at winning that game.