Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Proud to Suck

I recently started noticing people's "I can't" attitude. Let me clarify. How many times have you found yourself telling someone, without provocation, that you can't do something or aren't good at something? Here are some classic examples: "I'm not good at math." "I can't read maps." "I suck at science." Have we become a society where we are proud at sucking? It irks me. These statements are made so matter-of-factly that we all ignore it. So when you tell me you don't know how to read a map, then am I supposed to forgive your stupidity? Come on. It's really not that hard. Try! Learn it!

Or am I completely off base? Are these statements really a way to prevent criticism? Or to hide people's shame? I'm not sure. I am not saying I am perfect. I have occasionally announced that "I am bad at geography" (like really bad) and "economics escapes me completely" (like it diminishes me to a fraction of my former self). I AM ashamed. I wish I were better at them.

People seem more proud of what they can't do than what they can. That doesn't make any sense to me. How is this okay? No one notices these passing remarks. But maybe we should stop saying them nonetheless and keep it to ourselves. Instead, tell me something you can be proud of.


Kate said...

Interesting point - maybe it is fear of being seen as bigheaded - admitting you stink at something means you can boast about something else so in an attempt to show humility. Otherwise perhaps it is an excuse not to try.

Kate x

Vanessa said...

Hmm, I think people have their strengths and weaknesses and some people are just more vocal about their weaknesses. It doesn't mean they haven't tried to fix their deficiencies. In my case, no matter how hard I try, I will never be good at..say..drawing :oP

Laura said...

I wouldn't know. I'm good at everything. And don't you DARE DISAGREE!


Tara said...

Laura, you are good at everything. Now can you please move the gun away from my head? That's better.

I agree with Kate that it is an excuse not to try. I tell Laura this all the time. You shouldn't put yourself in a box. It's one of my many wise sayings. ;)