As I write this, I’m sitting on the ground in our little garden. The temperature is below freezing, the sun has not yet risen, and I’m wearing pyjamas, a hooded dressing gown, and an assortment of blankets. A hot water bottle nestles in my lap and I have a lovely big cup of Yorkshire tea by my side. I’ve already been out here for half an hour meditating. I suspect the neighbours think I’m A Bit Odd.
Last night I enjoyed the open air as I drove home in my ancient and much loved convertible. The rule is, if it’s not raining, that roof is down, baby! I keep more blankets and a large furry hat in the car for sub-zero nights. I suspect the other drivers think I’m A Bit Odd.
On long haul flights, I adorn my feet with gel toe separators and flight socks (toe section cut out to accommodate said separators). Ear plugs go in, eye mask goes on, and I contort myself into a little ball so that I can actually lie down in a foetal position in an economy seat. (Yoga and being a short-arse helps.) I suspect the other passengers think I’m A Bit Odd.
I come from a long line of fairly eccentric characters, so being thought A Bit Odd has never worried me. None of my oddities adversely affect anyone else – in fact my morning garden habit makes me peaceful, and open-top driving makes me happy, ergo I’m nicer to deal with. My in-flight caper means that fellow passengers can easily get out of their seats. It’s a win-win.
And let’s face it, we’re all A Bit Odd, aren’t we? We all have our funny little ways of being which aren’t the norm (whatever that is). I bet most of us are a bit different when we’re by ourselves, and I bet most of us restrain ourselves from doing certain unusual but harmless things, for fear of judgement.
Well… knickers to that!
It goes without saying that the crucial factor in expressing your oddness with abandon is considering the impact it has on others and the world around you. If you particularly like to see how far you can hawk and spit large loogies, please, indulge yourself alone. But if your oddness has a neutral or positive impact, then let loose! You might make someone smile; or inspire them to express themselves; or be happier in yourself and so be jollier company. If you’re being true to yourself and not hurting anyone, why on earth does it matter what passing strangers think? The world doesn’t need more clone humans, conforming to someone else’s idea of what’s ‘normal’, airbrushed and fashion-approved and behaving like good little automatons until we get to the end and realise we never actually lived our own lives. No. Knickers to that.
What the world needs is you, my lovely, in all your glorious, colourful, unusual, unique oddness! Life is short – do what makes you happy. Other people’s judgements are about their own fear and jealousy, and nothing to do with you. Go forth, my lovely, live the life you were meant to, one funny little way at a time, and celebrate the fact that really, we’re all in this together – and we’re all A Bit Odd!