Character Flaws


The secret with character flaws is to broadcast them
………………before they’ve been noticed.
……………………………That way,.folks will consider you
…………………………………………..quirky and adorable,
………………………whereas if they discovered them by chance
….they may think you fake and deceitful.

©Jane Paterson Basil

39 thoughts on “Character Flaws

      1. My son (and some of the girls at work) thinks I’m very peculiar – fun but odd – because of some of the things I say, the way I look at the world. I think seeing things another way is what helps us write though, don’t you, it’s part of the process? People who think we’re odd just have no imagination 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Young people expect us to conform to strict rules. When I was 23 I made friends with a ten-year old neighbour. One day we went to the park. I ran over to the climbing frame and hung upside-down from my knees – it seemed like the natural thing to do. She was horrified! Apparently I should have given up such childish pursuits, and being with me at the time was humiliating for her. She didn’t want to be seen with me after that 😉
          It’s just occurred to me – she was, um, large, and I tried to get her to join me. Maybe that was the real problem.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Ah, yes. I was a large ten year old too – I think I might have been mortified at being encouraged to hang upside down, probably because I know I’d end up on my head! Yes, I suppose we all have preconceptions about how certain age groups should behave. I always remember the Pulp song ‘Help the Aged’. One line goes –
            ‘One time they were just like you
            Drinking, smoking cigs and sniffing glue’
            While I’m pretty sure sniffing glue might not have been on the cards for most older people, I enjoyed the sentiment.

            Liked by 1 person

              1. Yes, I remember it well – its popularity, not first hand. I tried sniffing a solvent once (can’t remember what now) and didn’t like it, thank goodness. Fags and lager were my drugs of choice through my teens, though both have fallen largely by the wayside, thankfully

                Liked by 1 person

                1. I used to sniff bottles of stuff to find out what was in them, but was cured of that one day when my mother-in-law found a dusty bottle in her garage. I took off the lid, and as I went to sniff it, she shouted, “No!” It was too late. I collapsed from the whiff, and she grabbed the bottle. I don’t know what it contained, but it was potent.
                  I have a few M.I.L. stories like that. I had a habit of scaring her by putting myself at risk 🙂

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. Wow! Wonder what that was? Yes, never quite got the solvent thing (though fortunately I never tried it properly). Tried poppers once and thought that was a waste of time. I don’t think I have an addictive personality, fortunately.

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                    1. You just mentioned my vice – not that I’ve gone near the stuff for many years. Here’s the thing about Amyl; when the worst thing you have ever known, happens – when you have nothing to hold on to, but you have to hold someone else up, when it feels like nothing will ever be OK again, when you can’t understand why the world is turning – when that happens, and you’re walking around South Molton at 4am – (holding on to your grieving daughter who can’t sleep) because what else are you going to do? – that bottle of Amyl that someone’s left on a table behind a pub can be a lifesaver. For all of 30 seconds you can laugh like a fool, and when you come out of it, you think that without it you may have died, and you mustn’t die, because you have to look after a grieving family.
                      I have respect for Amyl, but I wouldn’t go near it these days. It’s not for playing with. The worse you feel, the better it works.

                      Liked by 2 people

                    2. I get that Jane. There are times when we all just to vanish for a short time, to disengage from what’s happening before it overwhelms us. As you say, when you know you have resposilibilities for others and can’t just disappear in your drug of choice, a few seconds’ release might just help us hold on a little longer. Weirdly when I was at my mentally most fragile, when the made of glass version of me was somehow walking and talking and living my life, I never touched anything, not even booze. Damn good job too, eh?
                      My biggest vice these days is chocolate which these days is probably considered more damaging than a spliff or two

                      Liked by 1 person

                    3. Chocolate isn’t damaging – the cocoa solids are good for you, and they boost your serotonin. However, the sugar…
                      All the same, better that than the super-weed that’s around these days. I know several people who can no longer function properly because of it.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    4. There are no guarantees, but if he’s well-adjusted with no major traumas or mental issues, that’s a good start. I fear for my grandsons. My eldest was introduced to the glamour of addiction at 13, by my son, who showed him terrible things. At 15 he was there when I resussed Paul. At 16 he was arrested for dealing. At 18 he was a mess and I was terrified. At 19 he took a long look at himself and the world. He’s 20, and I’m proud of him. His wisdom belies his youth. That’s the first of my 5 grandsons over the hurdle. The second did a couple of silly things last year, when he was fifteen, but he learnt that drugs were trouble, and now he has a lovely girlfriend. He’s too young for me to consider him safe, but I’m pretty confident. My family are hard-wired to run into trouble, and there are genetic mental issues.
                      I’d like to think that your son is at far lower risk than my crew, but what I’m saying is, try not to panic if he experiments, and take whatever advice you can get from Frank, and whatever you can find, both on the internet and off.
                      But just like Anton knew that Laura would recover, I know your lad will be fine. I really do.

                      Liked by 2 people

                    5. Thank you so much, Jane. Really lovely of you to be such a comfort. No , no guarantees in this world are there, all you can do is be watchful.
                      Sounds so promising for your grandson after such a hard start. Unimaginable, the memories he’ll have – of his dad’s near death at least. Was he the one who got into music? He was offered a place at Bristol, wasn’t he? How did that pan out?
                      Hard to avoid the genetic links, isn’t it? I have friends who have bi polar disorder on both sides of the family, other mental health issues too, one of which led to suicide – they watch their teenage daughter very closely. Can’t tell you how pleased I am for you about Laura’s ongoing recovery. She must be so tough to come out of that – an amazing person. Thanks Jane

                      Liked by 1 person

                    6. It was his uncle I resuscitated. Mark’s dad (my daughter’s partner) died seven weeks before Mark was born.
                      Mark realised that the course at Bristol was not the one he wanted – it wasn’t about designing programmes for electronic music, rather than making the sounds. He dropped out, and is hoping to become a fireman! He has an interview tomorrow – but he’s keeping up with his music.
                      Laura has made me so happy… the horror has just drifted into the past, almost as if it never was. Strange, after all those years…

                      Liked by 1 person

                    7. God, Jane, what a terrible experience for you both. Not something you’d ever forget. Sorry the course didn’t work out for him, but becoming a fireman would be amazing – I do hope the interview goes well for him. May Laura have the happiest of futures. So happy for you x

                      Liked by 1 person

  1. Poppers? Addictive personality? Lordy … I have enough monkeys on my back without any more. Glad to know Lynn does not have an addictive personality. Few have, unfortunately, Which is what those who peddle the stuff, rely on.

    Occasionally, I try the bottle of Rye and beer. Which is harmful enough. Without chem’s like Amyl. I did it all 50 years ago but gave it up because I prefer the real McCoy of meditation. Which is a bigger buzz of addiction. Inside myself.. Oh yeah, alcohol is probably worse? At least it’s legal. I prefer being free of all that and only occasionally succumb to the demon … just to blow my mind … groovy? Cheers Jamie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do have an addictive – or obsessive – personality, so I avoid alcohol, apart from once a year, when I drink a small glass of vodka and lemonade with my family – a ritual in memory of a loved one who died young. None of us like vodka… and I don’t like being drunk. I have little enough control over my life and my will, without adding alcohol to the mix.
      I think poppers are pretty low risk as an addictive substance, but the stuff plays havoc with the brain cells. Pop !Pop! Pop!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Never had poppers. When younger had Cannabis, LSD, mushrooms,[ Psilocybin and Amanita Muscaria] speed, and alcohol. All but alcohol are illegal, though the mushrooms grow in England and Wales. Tried bananas once? Does LSD change the brain permanently? Yeah probably? Interestingly Graham Hancock
        talks about the use of drugs by other cultures. They probably contribute to much human knowledge? I also used nicotine from tobacco in my early years. I like it but it does not like me.

        When at college in 1960’s. We had a registered nurse who had a presence within the college in Harrow. Providing knowledge that was not Engineering, based. Her lectures on sex and drugs for the years I was her student. Gave me much info, that I’ve used ever since. Especially on alcohol. Though her lessons on sex were at the time “mind blowing”. She had a big impact for me. Even if it took me some time to assimilate the content.

        Never did Cocaine, though had the opportunity. Several times. … I mean how many monkeys does one person need?

        Speed or Black Bombers, Purple Hearts or whatever name … like Mother’s Little Helpers do they need? Are peddled by the pharmaceuticals … ’nuff said. Is nice but really does society need this?

        I appreciate this discourse between you two, Lynn and Jane. It prompted me to come clean. Ohh yeah, I like chocolate and my wife makes cacao bean into something else … yummy! Cheers Jamie

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I have friends who still insist I missed out by not doing LSD. When I was about 16, my brother brought a huge bag of grass back from a festival. He hadn’t smoked any, and we didn’t have any baccy, so I suggested we dropped it in water and drank it. It floated on top, and my brother didn’t like the taste, so I downed the lot. The room upended, so the walls became the floor, and I was terrified. I clung on to the carpet and tried to claw my way to the door to warn my parents about what was happening – they were in the kitchen. My brother didn’t know what was wrong with me, but he stood against the door – no way was he letting mum and dad see me in that state.
          I recovered enough to find my way to the bathroom before throwing up, but it put me off tripping for life.
          The only thing I ever did apart from a short phase of smoking cannabis, and the poppers, was… ahem… opium – once. I was hitching down the Fosse Way, having a massive row with a boyfriend. A couple of other hitchers showed up and offered it to us. I only did it because I was so angry. It was amazing, so I knew I could NEVER do it again.
          I split with the boyfriend. Later I heard he became a heroin addict…


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