How Well Do You Really Know Another Person?

“Does it take higher intelligence
to be angry, really angry?” he
asks himself because he has had

four chocolate labs and he
has seen anger only once from
one of them in twenty-two years

and that one time the dog was
really, really provoked. “But male
Homo sapiens?” he asks again.

“Holy Cow!” he exclaims in ear
shot of the fourth chocolate lab
who slinks off to the other room.

“How well do you ever know another
person let alone know yourself?”
he was asked by a friend. Not

well, he thinks to himself except
to count on the anger factor. Of
course, he has seen it over and

over and over in violent movies
and on TV at political rallies, and
in himself, for sure, but also, in

good, highly educated, really smart
guys who have learned how to camou-
flage but given the right or wrong

situation of vulnerability let their
guard down and then there it is. Blam!
You can just count on it, he thinks

to himself, If you can count on
anything, you can always count on
male Homo sapiens’ anger. Maybe

it’s that higher intelligence. A really
smart friend, the one who asked him
the question about how well you really

know a person, a friend of fifty years,
got miffed at him and unloaded a barrage
of profanity on him giving him the

feeling he had been slapped up side
the head by a two by four. He thought
again about the friend’s question —

how well do you really know a person?
The question proved prophetic. He shouldn’t
have been surprised. The lab returns.


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