There's been a subject that I've been trying to get to all week.
Now, that might have been inspired by a particular incidence of truly unacceptable bullshit from a Sherlockian that came our way as a part of this lovely mixed-up social state we're in at the moment. But the comment truly came from decades of spotting that one weird, weird apple on every Sherlockian tree.
Sherlockians are warm, wonderful folks for the most part. If you're here, hopefully you've had firsthand experience of that. If you love Sherlock Holmes, chances are that we love you. You're a rare bird, a special find, and someone we wish we had more of. In fact, we love a dedicated Sherlockian so damn much, that we'll accept a few real peculiarities as a part of the package. Sherlock Holmes was a bit of a weirdo, wasn't he? Of course, we like a little weird!
The problem is, accepting a little weird, sometimes you just open the gate to A LOT WEIRD. Which is good. Being accepting is good. But you know how it is with serial killers . . . once they get away with one, they don't stop. It's the same with any rude behavior, even those that don't take lives. Our acceptance is a double-edged sword. It opens people up to let their best selves come out to play, but it can also let their worst selves come out, too, especially in an environment of enthusiastic devotion.
If this age of allowing people a choice of pronoun, I suppose it's okay for me to finally accept that you can have your own choice of other descriptors. If you want to be an "enthusiast" or an "aficionado" instead of a "fan," that's okay. If you're only doing it because you're the sort of prick with a need to elevate yourself above other people that likes our thing, well, I suppose we even should be kindly toward your personal issues. But the minute your personal grandiosity starts making other folks feel unwelcome in this space, because we were kind enough to allow your royal ass in here . . . well, you've kinda broken the covenant, haven't you?
That's where we have to draw the line.
Not talking permanent banishment here. We have to give sincere apologies a chance. And we can specifically ask for them, when needed. Because here's the thing: A lot of us come to this welcoming world for two reasons: a.) We love Sherlock Holmes, and b.) Our social skills suck so badly in the normal world that spending time with those who can overlook that lack in the glow of the Holmes fires.
We have to be a little forgiving, and offer a few second chances, because . . . well, I don't know about you, but I stumble into pissing people off on occasion. And I might be a little like my cat -- if I get bored enough, I'll start chewing on the hand that is petting me, just because it's the nearest thing. (Doesn't mean that old hand doesn't need a nip now and then, of course, just to remind it there's a beastie here.) And some of us are just socially awkward enough not to know when we've offended -- unless you're really raging offended, and then we might just run and hide and make little "yeeks" noises.
Being social is hard. It truly is, and, man, the skills didn't improve with quarantines. And, yes, right now there are some folks out there that need a proper spanking. But don't let them ruin your pleasant place. Just send in a good spanker if you know one.
Sherlockiana. The weirdness is a feature, not a bug, unless it is a bug, and then, well, you know the line from "Copper Beeches."
(Somehow "Smack! Smack! Smack!" just got a little kinky after that spanking bit. Please ignore that. Except I just called it out, didn't I? Sorry. Weirdo. Can't help it.)