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Have you ever watched a discussion or an arguement between two people and just wished they'd argue normally? Since it's obvious I'm reffering to a specific incident here, I suppose I should enlighten you. Today my dad and John were arguing about lunch. It wasn't a major arguement or anything, just a slight dispute.
But as they discussed it, I could here their silent battle plans. Person A would act deeply offended by Person B's accusations. Person B would realize that maybe his comment WAS a little excessive, so he would apologize for that. Then Person A would launch a counterattack, emphasizing how out of line person B was. Person B would then do a counteroffensive, pointing out that Person A was being unfair. Person A would then back off slightly, allowing Person B to attack further. And so on and so forth.
This isn't the only arguement I've seen progress like this. Heck, I've BEEN Person A and Person B in many arguements before. I suppose that's what hit me about the whole thing. I was watching two people try to play with each other's minds and I realized just how often I've done the same thing.
Not that I haven't known about this before. I usually wind up feeling very guilty after I win an arguement because I know how much gaming I've done to win. Of course, the other party usually uses the loss of the arguement to throw one last comment, usually outlining how nasty my gaming was. Granted, they're doing exactly the same thing by throwing the comment out there, but it's still true.
This type of gaming seems to manifest in other areas, too. My mom came home from work the other day feeling pretty tense. Of course, when she's tense, everyone else is also tense. But when she was talking to my dad, I realized that, while she WAS tense, she wasn't to the point where it was capable of ruining everyone's evening. She was acting like it was, though, and because of that, we all did our utmost to make sure things went smoothly. I realized that I've done that many times as well. I'll act like I'm really a whole lot closer to snapping than I am so that people will give me space.
Admittedly, it's a dirty trick, but I never bother to think of that at the time. I'm always more interested in getting my way than in whether or not I'm ruining other people's days. Generally speaking, unless I'm in full psychotic panic mode, a little self-control will make me settle down and things can resume normally. I only overplay it to save myself the effort. I wonder if my mom ever deliberately overplayes things like I do.
I'm not saying that I'm never in an irrepairably bad mood; I'm just saying that, oftentimes, if I really wanted to, I could set things right. It's not always what SHOULD happen; there are times when I'm completely justified in my anger. Regardless, though, too many of my arguements take that course. There are too many times when I tell myself that I HAVE to blow something out of proportion just a little to clear things up quickly.
This leaves me wondering just how much other people are calculating their moves, and to what extent. I know a girl who uses PMS as an excuse for ANYTHING. There are times when some girls seem to suddenly explode, and I wonder if they plan that as a preemptive strike to throw someone off balance.
Are we all just using these unpredictable "emotions" to control each other? Will we reach a point where we no longer have legitimate emotions, just precision strikes?

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