I'm odd. I realize that. It took me years to figure that out but once I did, I became more forgiving of those with which I interact daily. As we are raised within a small group of family and friends, with occasional excursions into the real world, we primarily focus on the behaviors of those we deal with daily and they become the measure for normalcy for each individual. If you're raised in a household where everyone eats copious amounts of meat and puts ketchup on everything, then to you, that will be normal. It takes life changing events, continuous and constant exposure to differing culinary experiences to alter that concept of what was previously, normal. But it happens. All the time. I myself am not anything like the people with which I was raised. I don't eat meat, nor any ketchup. I have a tremendous appreciation of the fine arts, my family and most of my friends even now have probably never heard of Vermeer, and could never tell the difference between Pissaro and Picasso, nor Monet and Manet. It's not HOW you are raised, it's how you apply yourself to life after each individual human goes through that process that we all go through, recognition of our own individuality. For fun, you can check out the Edinburgh Lectures for an indepth discussion on how humans morph into individual consciousnesses. (Weird stuff man) And then into part of the Universal Consciousness. Not for everyone, I thought it fascinating.
So at some point, everyone goes from a child living as part of the family unit, into a cognizant thinking individual. For some, that might be at age two. For others, in their teens, or thirties. For some in backwoods areas of little eddie cashun, it might go on for their entire lives where whole families think, act and believe with absolute certainty that how grandpa and pa lived is perfectly fine with them and they continue to think, act and produce even more offspring with the same capacities and beliefs. Not unlike a lot of Republicans and Southern Baptists. Sorry, a bit of a snide comment. But then being snarky in reality is a part of my upbringing, so nurture does play a part in our psychological makeup. It does take an effort to change that as well. I so far haven't been completely successful at eliminating that unwanted trait. But, then, back to our individuality, how is it that some humans living in a specific family situation, with siblings, and extended family, grow up to be completely and totally off the wall wacko? By that I mean, serial killers or those with the propensity toward horrific violence. Did they eat the lead paint chips off the walls, drink too much Kool-Aid with all the horrific artificial dyes, or perhaps mom and dad taught them to pull the wings off flies and watch fascinated as they spin helplessly. And then that behavior grew exponentially over time.
It is something that is difficult to quantify. I can only tell you what I believe. There are a lot of opinions out there, doctors and researchers that talk to the wackos and then write papers about how the crazy came to be. There is getting to be a lot more research into just that very subject. This is a link to my favorite repository of data, the NCBI Library. (Diet and Violence) I don't think you have to be credentialed to read that one. But it draws very obvious conclusions about how chemical laden foods have increased as has violence and there are specific corollaries found between them. On the other hand, the psychologists out there all want to take credit for their conclusions on why there is an increase in violence and death. It's the old nurture thing. The way a child is raised, their experiences along with persons they come into contact with, are what work to develop the minds of the more odd and wacko amongst us.
I like to think that both are right. Indeed the diets of most Americans are far far less than ideal. Toxic chemical laden foods, sugar sugar sugar and greater exposure to an ever greater population that has more diversity in both good, and bad ways. More people, more concepts foreign to the previously determined norms in which the family unit is accustomed. Then reactions to those concepts, when rejected by the traditions of the family, can be both intriguing and disgusting. That's an easy one to understand. Snails. When I first heard from neighbors that they ate snails, my family was disgusted. I tried them, and was pleasantly surprised. Fish head soup is another. Hey, every culture has its own quirks and every other culture believes them to be odd. However, those individuals that branch out, aren't disgusted by what was previously considered the norm; are in the path of becoming different from everyone else. Not necessarily bad, but when we combine that with the diet of most Americans, laden with neurotoxins and excitotoxins, we have a recipe for disaster. Don't believe me, look at the news. It isn't just Muslim extremists killing people, it's a variety of people, usually younger people, with often perfectly normal upbringings and siblings that don't exhibit any of the same characteristics of violent behaviors. How do we explain it?
There will always be controversy when attempting to define the parameters with which humans go from within accepted norms, to without. Everybody I'm sure knows a few that they believe to be outside the accepted parameters for normalcy. I've known a few. Well, quite a few. And who knows, my interactions with those that don't fit into the established parameters of normalcy as established by not just society, but the familial upbringing that shaped my formative existence. Case in point, one of the first wackos I remember meeting. I was fourteen, I worked at a tropical fish store cleaning up and selling fish for the owner who he and his family would eventually become very good friends. A woman, a very odd in appearance woman came into the shop and asked if we sold leeches. She had a sore on her leg and wanted to use them along with maggots to eat the bad part of the sore. Yeah, self directed medical procedures with fish store leeches. We didn't have any, in fact we tried our best to kill any we ever found. But my introduction to wackos was just beginning.
Throughout my life, I have met, (even married one) had relationships with or tried desperately to avoid contact with people that I, and probably most, would classify as, wacko. How do you quantify the totality of crazy. Is it a little bit crazy to be like my old roommate Terry Fredericks that was dating the girl next door and every Monday after he was with her for the whole weekend, she would break into the house and steal his stuff. And he was okay with it, she slept with him. Which one was wacko. Or the woman that was a friend of Fat Gary's that during sex wanted me to hit her. I never did, and only had relations that ONE time, so I'm pretty sure I'm not the wacko. Perhaps not, she was unbelievably attractive. It's not like she wanted to hit me. That would have made me the wacko. Or the guy I know that believes that he is the New Messiah and travels around attempting to convert young ladies to his belief system. Is he wacko? I thought he was, but he gets a lot more women than I ever have and he ain't all that great looking. But to me, there are a lot of people out there that exhibit behaviors that I consider wacko. I know a lot of men and women, that like to go to strip clubs. I don't. I know men that patronize prostitutes, I don't. I know people that eat crappy fast food and have unbelievably poor nutritional standards. I don't. I think all those are wacko. However, none of them have gone on a shooting spree. Nor has my interactions with any of them caused any sort of thing within my psyche.
I guess it's all a matter of degree. Of wacko I mean.