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“Not everything is about you,” American comedian Bill Maher once exposed some people’s penchant to always steer conversations toward themselves, their travels, or even their pet peeves. 

This reminds us of one joke (or poke) on narcissists, which asks, how many of them it takes to fix a light bulb. Of course, the answer is always one…but he lets the world revolve around him first. 

As it is, theirs is different from everyone’s innate yearning to be heard in any conversation or transaction. In their case, getting to hug all the attention is the primary aim. Dopamine seekers that they are, it is definitely much better than merely being ’liked’ or ‘loved’ in the social media universe, multi-verse, alpha-verse, or whatever it’s called nowadays. 

With regard to social media, some practitioners in social science today insist that the platform has indeed introduced us to an open-mike reality where the words or toads coming out of anyone’s mouth are now deemed acceptable and to be respected. 

In today’s terms, that’s just part and parcel of being “woke.” They likewise assuage this is where the narcissist complex supposedly births from. 

However, there are those on the other hand who say that this sense of ’empowerment’ is not solely caused by the coming of the internet and social media. They suggest that surely, other factors, such as the slide in the quality of education, upbringing, and related shifts, may have laid the groundwork for such behavior in people today, particularly among the latter gens. 

While these theories are admittedly controversial, sweeping, and confusing to many, we still must accept that, even if we took them with nothing but a grain of salt, there are still some truths in them. 

As an example, try listening to any politician being interviewed. Almost always, any issue or topic thrown in their direction will naturally gravitate and be expertly steered toward their agenda. In the same manner, beauty queens will always find ways to dig deep into the box-load of prepared answers in their heads once a query is posed to them during the interview portion. When we look closely, these can even be easily observed during day-to-day ordinary conversations. In the vernacular, there’s even a term “bidahay” which roughly translates as playing the hero.

In the end, what can be had in knowing all these? Perhaps nothing earth-shaking, really. For one, I say let us respect politicians, beauty queens, and others to go at it alone with their lives. After all, that’s their problem. Ours is how we face the world. 

At this, I always look back to a Logic class pop sheet we had in college as a reference, ‘How not to be Bamboozled.’ In a nutshell, it advises that it’s always best to be aware of how others behave in our tiny portion of the sandbox in our everyday dealings. 

That’s the minimum level of survival. Sorting out the rest will largely depend on how long we play there. Or what moves we eventually come up with in our journey at interacting with people, woke, narcissist or not.


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