Saturday, December 23, 2006

On Assumptions, for Lack of a Flashier Title

"You can't judge my brother because he's not a book."

-Melanie Marquez

Outside any religious belief, what is an assumption?

My attention-deficit hyperactive disordered "pious" classmate has made the error of raising his hand to the question posed by our high school chemistry teacher. As expected, he expounded on the spectacular event where the Blessed Virgin Mary was assumed into heaven. As expected too, our teacher, along with several other students, rolled their eyes. Like a teacher speaking to a mentally backward trilobyte having difficulties understanding what she is saying, she repeated the "outside any religious belief" clause. My classmate had the audacity to dispute that the assumption of Mary, who, for all I know, may or may not be blessed and may or may not be Virgin, is not a mere religious belief but a historical fact.

Suffice to say that this pleasant story ended with a chemistry teacher raising her voice and, contrary to a lot of clichè cheesy movies, the holy and divine forces of good beaten back by the evil of a strong science teacher.

An assumption, according to a handy black dictionary I have, which could well be mistaken for a cultist's handbook, is something taken for granted or supposed to be correct. For example, "I'm working on the assumption that all blondes are stupid," means pretty much the same as, "I believe my existence is heavily dependent on the stupidity of the blondes, therefore I exist."

Of course, a lot of assumptions are completely wrong. A very close friend of mine quite surprisingly and most appallingly assumed that all geeks are technophillic elven trekkies cursed with an eldritch lingua obscura spell, which is the reason why people rarely understand them. While I do agree that geeks are, in general, sometimes difficult to understand, not all of us are fans of Tolkien's LOTR or the Star Trek Series. I, myself, do like Star Trek Enterprise, although I have no idea who James T. Kirk or Spock is.

Another assumption I have had anguish encountering was that all written prose fantasy works are elven. I've had some people ask me what I'm currently working on, which, in itself, is quite a powerful balm to my ego. However, I am very much irked that, mentioning I'm working on a fantasy setting, over-enthusiastic fangirls would gush, "Oh, like Lord of the Rings?" Seriously, what's with this remarkably unhealthy obsession over white-haired elven archers who, what with their pointed ears and all, could just as well have been citizens of a primitive Vulcan civilization? Why, oh why, do people assume my fantasy stories take place somewhere in Middle Earth when they do not even have orcs, dwarves or elves? Why am I unfortunate enough to be assumed a proud and conceited writer who is too snub-nosed to admit I have been inspired by Tolkien's works when I absolutely abhor them?

Allow me, too, the audacity to point out a flaw almost innate in half the humans I encounter: females. Seriously, they think it's alright to be touchy-feely all about you. They put their hands on your thigh, on your arm, on your shoulder and, for the more aggressive ones, your butt as they give it a playful slap. We, men, on the other hand, don't have the same benefits and, with the exception of those on the extreme side of the gay scale, the softest of whispers, the merest breath of wind on their napes or the slightest touch on their arms could very well be enough to provoke some of these penisless harpies into screaming bloody rape or sexual harassment.

The other half too, shalt not be left unscathed. Aye, ye men. Think ye I be forgetting 'baout all o' ye now, hrrr?

Men have always been known to be sexual creatures. It is thought that in the same way our mouths helplessly salivate when we think about food, men, too, have organs that react at the dimmest spark of imagination regarding sex. A stereotype commonly thought to be true is that biological males are more sexually aggressive and biological females are more soft and romantic. Surely, a lot of you have heard of the quote, "Boys will be boys," used on males of all sorts, straight, bi or gay. To a degree, I am inclined to agree.

However, I do beg to differ when people just assume that males like me would love nothing more than a hard, rough climax with no strings attached. Indeed, the saying, "Dog is man's best friend," very nearly plunged into oblivion when a new saying, "His hand is man's best friend," more accurately described the picture. Not all of us, however, are any these sexually-crazy wolves always on the hunt for their prey. Some of us have our softer sides too, and no, we don't have to be gay to want for a warmer, more intimate and more romantic relationship.

A Broadway musical by AvenueQ, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist, quite accurately depicts another form of presumption: racism. I am inclined to agree with the aforementioned artists that everyone's a little bit racist. I also agree that maybe the world might be a better place if we just all admitted that we are, indeed, flawed with racism and that it is but a fact of life. However, I will not agree to being subject to stronger forms of racism. You may be familiar with the sort of talk that runs along the lines of, "Oh, you're from the Philippines? Is that where people eat frog's legs, chicken's intestines, matured duck's egg or pork blood?"

While I do tend to abhor pork blood, I can see nothing wrong with eating frog's legs, matured duck's egg or chicken's intestines, which are in fact, quite delicious, if you ask me. The thrill of the utter shock radiated by other people quickly grows old and, in its stead, appalling annoyance tends to give me that sharp look in the eye and the ruffled feathers.

I could probably rant on and on about the horribly stupid things people assume about everyone else. Doing so, however, might drive away what precious little audience I have. I'd now be better off ending this transmission.

Okay, put 'er on Warp 3.

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