Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Busy, Busy Grapevine.

In college, a small little clique-within-a-clique started that we referred to as "The Grapevine Supper Club." It was a group of boozy boys and catty girls, and there was always something going on that warranted closer inspection and scrutiny. It's remarkable how gossip, which I suppose I must finally admit I engage in, spreads and how very fast it moves.

As an adult in the teaching profession, I assumed people would very much mind their business. I was terribly wrong. Always the last to find out about things, I discovered I was one of the very few people minding my own. Tending to other people's was the course de jour. When I lost my job, I intended to keep it very quiet. I told only four people and intended to keep it that way until the close of school for the summer was afoot. Within three hours, people I hadn't talked to in years were coming by to tell me how sorry they were for me. I don't know if I was more pissed off or stunned and intrigued with how the grapevine works. Yesterday, a colleague experienced the breaking of her final straw and left in a quasi-blaze of glory. Not quite "Grab Two Beers and Slide," but "retiring" on the first day of school does not happen with regularity. I spoke with her directly and so I knew fairly early on. Last night, my cell phone, email and facebook were on fire. Never saw so many "OMG!s" delivered to my inbox in all my life.

People are just bored by their own lives. Anything out of the norm entertains us, and there's some special delight in being able to be the first to let someone else know. I'm the guilty gossip, I suppose. I do my very best not to spread it at all. When I know something about someone, I keep it to myself. I positively do not believe in letting out things about someone's private lives to others. And yet, I do enjoy hearing tales from others... It's all very train-wreck for me. A very strange feeling to be completely drawn to and repulsed by something at the same time.

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