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Conor’s Complaints: The wrath of Con

What%27s+this+fish+doing+here%3F
What's this fish doing here?

What's this fish doing here?

Clarion photo Anna Rollins

Clarion photo Anna Rollins

What's this fish doing here?

By Conor Bergin, Editor-in-Chief

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Trump’s Food Analogy of America

In sixth grade social studies, while learning about immigration in America and the many nationalities that make up our country, I was told a wonderful narrative that warmed my heart: “America is like a big melting pot or salad bowl, where many different types of people come together as one.” However, after seeing President Trump’s racist and divisive campaign epitomized by the Muslim travel ban, I am convinced Trump’s administration and his supporters don’t believe in the nice salad bowl analogy. They would rather substitute in a different food analogy for race in America, say like trail mix: “We’ve got a lot of different pieces coming together, but you can just pick around the parts you don’t like.” Heck, with Betsy Devos as our new Secretary of Education, this backwards way of thinking might be implemented as new curriculum. You see to Trump, white people are like M&Ms, and similar to a whiny toddler, Trump has an irrational fear of cashews and peanuts. Nobody likes the guy who picks around the trail mix, Trump. Also, generally people who stoop to that level are under the age of six. So, it turns out you have more things in common with small children other than your maturity level and freakishly tiny baby hands. Grow up and eat your trail mix in handfuls like an adult. I think you’ll find the wide range of flavors together tastes really good.

A Passage from the CB Book of Wisdom

According to Commandment Seven in the Conor Bergin Book of Wisdom, the key to living a happy, healthy life is to “free yourself of narcissistic tendencies.” The rule is right there next to Commandment Six, “Harry Potter Weekend on Freeform is more important than Sunday homework” and Commandment Eight, “If the teacher says notes are optional, don’t take them.” But anyway, back to lucky Commandment Seven. The battle to be less self-absorbed is a difficult one. A good way to check how you are doing in this struggle is to pay attention to how addicted you are to your reflection. Let me ask you this: When you walk down a sidewalk, can you not resist looking at your reflection in every car or building window you pass? If you answered yes to that question, congratulations, you are showing symptoms of narcissism. You are showing aggressive symptoms if you look continuously, no matter how many windows you pass, or if you show the same behavior while walking with company. For the record, that move where you try to pretend like you’re looking at something behind you is not fooling anyone. Everybody knows in reality, you’re sneaking another look at your reflection as your head turns. I know this because I catch myself doing moves like this all the time and it gets old. I strive to practice what I preach, that doesn’t mean I always succeed. With diligence and self awareness, though, we can improve. Another way to test your narcissistic capacity is through what I call the “Facetime Test.” It is simple: When you Facetime somebody, do you find yourself looking more at your face in the tiny box in the corner rather than the big box of the person you’re talking to? People fail this test all the time. I don’t even think any communication gets transferred during a Facetime. While one person talks, the other just zones out, getting lost in their own face. Then nobody wants to admit that they weren’t listening, so nothing is said. A Facetime call with a narcissist holds the same effect as venting to a one-way mirror. When I find myself staring at my little box it drives me crazy. The person I am talking to takes up 95% of the screen, yet I can’t keep my eyes away from the 5% of me in the corner. I hope I’m never in the situation where I have to take a bullet for somebody because after paying attention to how I Facetime I don’t think I could do it.

Lazy Eye Awareness

Hello, my name is Conor Bergin, and I have lazy eyes. You heard me correctly, lazy eyes. Plural. For those of you who don’t know what that means, a lazy eye is a condition where one eye becomes unused and drifts out of alignment with the eye that is focused. For me, both eyes have the tendency to drift at different times, mostly when I am zoning out, so math class is a frequent lazy eye hotspot. Other times an eye will drift just because. Due to my lazy eyes, I am often subjected to puzzled looks and mockery from those around me. It is because of this poor treatment that I have decided to step forward with my condition and become an advocate for lazy eye awareness and those like me. In my experience, I have learned most people do not know the proper etiquette surrounding lazy eyes. Lazy-eyed people are often met with comments such as “What is going on with your eyes!?” or “Are you looking at me?” These are examples of what not to do. If you react like so, you are a poor person. The proper etiquette of the situation is to not acknowledge the lazy eye. Act casual, as if nothing has changed. Chances are my eye drifted just because and I am still intently engaged in your conversation. Yes, there is the small chance that I got bored and zoned out. The lazy eye largely gives away my “pretending-to-listen” poker face, one of the biggest downfalls of the condition. In this case, tell a better story. You might just see that eye slowly drift back into place. This message was paid for by the Northwest Eye Institute and viewers like you. Thank you.

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Conor’s Complaints: The wrath of Con”

  1. Ann Desmond on February 23rd, 2017 3:39 PM

    Possibly your best column ever, I loved the melting pot analogy although am reminded of the late Justice Thurgood Marshall’s comment that he either did not melt or didn’t make it into the pot!

    Not everyone would own focusing on the little corner box when on FaceTime and I remain in awe of your self-knowledge of narcissistic tendencies.

    Finally I will keep a sharp eye out on your vision when speaking – less you find me boring and drift off. As for telling a better story: I will give it my best older and wiser shot!

    [Reply]

  2. Ann Desmond on February 23rd, 2017 3:43 PM

    It is my belief that Conor’s Complaint/compliments are just the beginning of a career worth following. Good luck Conor!

    [Reply]

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The student-run newspaper of Cleveland High School
Conor’s Complaints: The wrath of Con