Last night, Jim Cooper introduced me to his wife and described me as funny, but “uses words not in your dictionary.” He meant cuss words. He seemed aghast and delighted by them.
It was lovely. It also reminded me that, though, to me, I am a weird, boring introvert from nowheresville who drives a ten year old car and hasn’t weeded her flower beds in a year, there is some public notion of me I need to be mindful of.
It’s hard to talk about because my level of fame is tiny. Tiny. I don’t know how to stress how tiny it is. Like, if a normal person ever gets .5 fame, I have .6. Someone like, say, Kid Rock, a person my parents don’t know, has 1000 fame. Beyonce is like 1000000000000 fame. So, really, in the grand scheme of things, I have no fame.
But there’s enough of a public sense of me that the gap between who I am and who my public self is is noticeable to me. There’s me, just me, and then there’s this version of me that people I don’t know know. And that version of me is more real to them than I am.
That version of me isn’t me, but we have some responsibilities to each other and I sometimes forget that.