My manifesto against the No People

girl-and-car

I’m going to say some pretty nasty things about some pretty nasty people. I will not change their names in order to spare their feelings or save them from public embarrassment. I don’t care about their feelings. In fact, generally speaking, I don’t really care about most people’s feelings. There’s too many people out there with too many feelings, too many cry-babies who can’t take the harshness of life before swallowing a fistful of pills or without the safety and comfort of Facebook, a place perfectly designed for those needing to spill their emotional guts without having to achieve that annoying little thing called genuine human interaction.

This isn’t a generalized rant against the system, though it may seem so at first. Today I’m ranting against a particular group of people indigenous to…well, this planet. You can find this type of person in all corners of the world. This person can be a man, a woman, both, or neither. This person comes in all kinds of physical shapes and forms. This person can be tall, short, fat, skinny, blond, blue-eyed, big-nosed, muscular, wimpy, black, white, orange, pretty, ugly, old, young, whatever. Some of these people are stylish, taking care to notice and participate in every fashion trend they pick up on the streets of whatever city they live in. Others dress at Wal-Mart, if they live over there across the big blue ocean, or at a local Chinese store if they live over here in the Old World. This type of person is often well educated. In fact, the educated are probably the worst kind. Though, sometimes you can run into a half-literate boob that could easily win the prestigious title of the President of all the No People.

Because, you see, I am talking about that group of people we all know and hate, the No People. Who are the No People? Well, if you have to ask, then I’m afraid you just might be one of them. Heaven help you if you are; blogging certainly won’t.

I have recognized a No Person in quite a few people living around me. My father, for one. Growing up with him, I learned a simple motto by which he lived: Fear Everything! Serbian parents often stunt the mental and social development of their children by imposing upon them limitations totally and completely out of keeping with the modern world. As an ethnic group we lack that American rah-rah spirit, that “We can do anything!” mentality. Success, we believe, isn’t really something you can achieve by effort, talent, or a combination of both; it’s mostly something that either misses you completely, or falls right into your lap by chance, luck, or an act of God. In case you were wondering, as you must have been, this is exactly why most Serbian people never really try. My father imposed upon me his own shortcomings, small fears and giant phobias, his lack of ambition and his overwhelming lack of self-confidence, believing that frightening the shit out of me will somehow keep me safe from the horrors of the outside world. Serbians of the world, prove me wrong, if you can.

A No Person is that friend of yours who can never find enough time to answer your e-mail, or even an urgent text message. Good luck to you if you ever find yourself standing on the side of the road with a flat tire, putting all your faith in that guy who has told you a hundred times he’ll always be there for you with his jack lift. A No Person is that old friend who happens to be performing a must of musts, an inescapable and sacred act of clipping his toe nails on the very day you’re moving into your new apartment and really need a hand moving that big old couch from your basement into your new living room. A No Person is that guy who’d really rather not lend you his car so you can make it to that job interview in the morning because, well, the muffler is kind of loose and the noise it’s making really is kind of strange. A No Person is that woman you work with whose children call her every five minutes, every single work day, only because she’s a terrible parent and her spawn are a bunch of imbeciles always looking for their shoelaces or their house keys or their father(s). A No Person is that cashier at the grocery store who can never find enough change, or a smile; smiling, of course, being a habit she lost back in 1973 (along with her virginity, one presumes).

A No Person is my neighbor Dragan, a man with a beer belly so large it has developed its own personality and a popular Facebook page, a man so cynical about every topic under the sun that any conversation with him always inevitably must lead to his conclusion, “No, you’re wrong, that can’t be possible.” I suppose when you live your life incapable of ever seeing your own feet, most things must seem impossible.

A No Person is any and all of my aunts, women who kill me with their advice about marriage every single time I happen to be within shouting distance. Marriage, according to them, is that sacred principle by which we all must live, though love, they’ve found by trial and error, doesn’t exists. Show me one happily married aunt, and I will show you ten of mine with marriages as successful and happy as a series of nasty car wrecks.

A No Person is anyone who has ever in any way, shape, or form, discouraged you from doing anything in your life. A No Person is anyone stupid enough to think that just because they never could, you can’t either. A No Person is that annoying someone with an unsolicited negative comment after every sentence that comes out of your mouth. A No Person is anyone who has ever raised his/her eyebrows whenever you mentioned doing something new, different, or challenging. A No Person is anyone who doesn’t believe.

Don’t be a No Person. Believe!

5 thoughts on “My manifesto against the No People

  1. I like a bit of a No Person occasionally:) When I get tired of the pioneers of this world, the yes we can-s, the successful ones, the mortgage obssessed, the runners, the healthy, the politically correct, the non smoking vegan righteous, the quoters of positive platitudes, the self help book lovers and all that nonsense.
    I’d trade all that for a nice, negative rakya with your father and Dragan any day:)

    • Judging by what you’re getting tired of, you must be living now, or have lived in the past, in America. In Serbia we are not mortgage obsessed, we do not run at the crack of dawn because Dr. Oz or Oprah said we should, we are definitely not politically correct, everyone smokes and eats meat (often at the same time, at least in my family), and as for the self-help book lovers, well, let’s just say that’s a purely Barnes & Noble invention…no Barnes & Noble here, yet.
      Let me conclude this reply by setting your mind at ease: I dislike the Yes People as much as I dislike the No People. It’s just that, when you belong to a little nation the rest of the world likes to kick around like an old rag, the Yes mentality could come in quite handy, at least once in a while.

  2. Your post made me recognize so many No Person on my surroundings.
    The one that came instantly to my mind, though, was my ‘best’ friend, who volunteered to organize the baby shower for my first baby. Before the shower she was of dubious help, but it was still nice to know that I’d have her help on the day of the shower. Then, when the day came, instead of arriving early to help me and my humongous tummy to decorate and put everything in place (while my husband ran the errands to get food, etc), she was actually really late and arrived after several guests because they were screening ‘Conan, the barbarian’ at the TV and SHE COULD NOT MISS IT for anything in this World! Yeah… best friend!
    My husband arrived from the store to find me crying like a baby and that scared the heck out of him. I was crying because I was feeling helpless (which I was indeed – literally) having to put all together on my own while heavily pregnant…
    That girl is certainly a No Person. From the kind you described as “A No Person is that old friend who happens to be performing a must of musts, an inescapable and sacred act of clipping his toe nails on the very day you’re moving into your new apartment and really need a hand moving that big old couch from your basement into your new living room.”
    And by the way, when she moved to a new apartment we were there to help with the move and found that she wasn’t even packed!!! Meaning we packed and moved her.
    But enough of bitterness. She’s still nice, if you don’t need her help. Haha! ;o)

    And BTW, whatever it was that you were trying to do/change/try and found resistance, leading you to write this post, GO FOR IT! Just do it!😉

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