What My Teeth has taught me about People

Before we begin, I have a fun little place for each of you to check out.  http://ncase.me/trust/

Pretty cool right?

So why play that game?  (Besides the fact that it is fun) because at heart, there is a lesson about people in general that needs to be made here.

But first, man, what a difference teeth makes.  I didn’t expect to have so many women (no drags,  I swear) hit on me in a gay bar.  It was flattering.  I’ll leave the details to that for another time.  But the point is, I’ve had the pleasure of being noticed more.

It’s been fun.

It reminded me that a year ago I noticed quite a bit of…hmm, I wouldn’t call it neglect per se.  There was a month were I just noticed that things didn’t quite come together.  Plans would be dropped at the last minute.  Or I wouldn’t be invited.  Now if they were just not close friends or family, I’d notice.  But it was a bit of everyone, close and far over all kinds of things.

One of the worst experiences I had was with beta readers.  I had over two dozen yes answers to reading my manuscript.  I only ever heard back from one.  Just one.  I heard all kinds of reasons why it didn’t happen.  Some of them were valid, some of them were very weak to be honest.  But the one that got me the most was one particular beta reader.  They had said yes to doing it, and I met them at the party where my last tooth broke.  They had said that they weren’t a fan of my kind of work and were only doing it as a favour, in which they didn’t.

That really hurt.

Then shortly after, a friend of mine’s birthday party in which I wasn’t invited.  All my other close friends were.  Now they had their reasons, but it just occurred to me at that point at that time that maybe, just maybe I was being taken for granted.

And then it hit me that the person at fault for this if this was the case, was me.

I don’t know what I did, or what I carried that made people think they could do this to me, but i made me realize that perhaps it was maybe part of how I looked at myself.  It wasn’t the teeth per se, but rather what I carried with it.  If there is one thing I learned last year was that self care was important.  Not just because of the physical care your body needs, but rather also how you look at yourself.  Something about how I looked at myself made this possible.

I had to change it.

But how?  Well, first I fixed my teeth, but then I made a conscious change to my philosophy.

The copycat system.


In short, from this point forward I put as much effort into meeting people and being with people as they do with me.  I’m open to meeting and being with everyone.  I love interactions and conversations and will always be engaging, but I will chase no one down.  The people I want in my life are the people that want to be there.  If you don’t want to be there, your actions will determine that.  If you do, vice versa.

And I will copy that.  I have ended, cut off and refused to deal with people who don’t want to make that effort.  Simply put, I don’t have the time and energy to deal with that kind of person.

And if no one around me wants to be that kind of person, I rather be alone.  No one wants to be alone, me included, but if the choice is to be around someone who really doesn’t want to be there, and being by myself, I rather be by myself.  That person does no good.

Perhaps the biggest mistake we make is that some relationships are meant to move past their course.  We have to let them go.  Some of the people are looking for something else, and just aren’t going to be there for you.  Some are toxic people who hold you back.  Others are seeking answers and trying to become more.  If you really care, you have to let them do that and make their own mistakes.  You also have to make yours.  Maybe in time they will come back.  Maybe not.  Either way you wish them well.

Find the people that build you, want you to grow and become more, and work with them to do the same.   Recognize them.  A million different people are useless.  I’ve moved dozens of times.  In truth I have a handful of real friends.  Everyone else is everyone else.  I think this is true for everyone.

Treat people the way you want to be treated, but also remember to treat people exactly how they treat you.  You are no one’s doormat.


Published by jpantalleresco

I write and I wander. I am currently in Canada, tomorrow who is to say? I just released Veritas, my first comic, done with Craig Cermak and Jim Reddington. I currently write columns for http://www.comicbloc.com and http://allpulp.blogspot.com. I have published essays, worked on magazines and movies and am working on my first novel, graphic novels and am planning on committing suicide on my first feature film. I chase my dreams wherever I may go. When I'm not writing I work on a day job and read, play video games and magic and chase girls. Sometimes I even catch them.

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