Every year begins with the Campaign of Niceness foremost in my mind. So far, every year, the Campaign somehow falls to the wayside. If I bring it up, those who know me laugh.
"Campaign of Niceness? This would imply that you are actually attempting to be on your best behavior!"
Those who know me think that is both funny and impossible.
It is not.
Underneath this sarcastic, feisty (I loathe that word but can find no better one to suit), warrior-like exterior of Jen-ness is a person who is -don't laugh, I'm laying this on the line for everyone - essentially shy. A sensitive, thoughtful woman with emotions as deep, vast and turbulent as the ocean.
For various reasons, the least of which was growing up with two snotty older brothers and a harrowing school experience, I developed an armor of words to protect my soft insides. A false bravado to cover up my wounded, gentle self.
I deflected barbs with insults and social gaffes were covered up with PeeWee Herman "I meant to do that" aplomb. As I, let's say, matured, the armor hardened and became impassable to all except those closest. Even then, they were and are treated to a snottiness above the call of duty.
Careful reflection that I apply to myself with a frequency that would surprise many leads me to attempt me to tone down the sarcasm, the stand-offishness, the 'get them before they get you' behavior. To show my soft side -which is most of my being.
So every year I begin a Campaign of Niceness. I make concerted and conscious effort to be nice. To not reflexively protect myself from everyone. To except, to share, to understand.
And every year, either people don't believe and/or they simply laugh their asses off at my efforts.
So here it is.
A manifesto of sorts.
I, Jennifer Jordan, vow to all I care about and even those I have a passing affection for, to be nicer.
Believe me now?
Didn't think so.