Narcissism

Nobody ever cops to it. Admitting to being narcissistic is like acknowledging that you have BO, or that you are a colossal bore. Can you imagine Kim and Kanye, or Kim Jong-un, or Mitt or Newt, or any celeb for that matter, opening up to Barbara Walters or Oprah about his or her private struggle with self-infatuation? Bold-facers will confess to murder before they will own up to being narcissists.

Not me. Like Miss Piggy, I am completely in the thrall of moi, and I happily acknowledge the fact. When she said, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye,” Miss P. spoke for us both. There are two pink follow spots up in the sky: one is pointed directly at Miss Piggy, and the other one is drenching yours truly in flattering light.

I have a whole battery of excuses for my narcissistic delusions. A bizarre childhood during which I was constantly upstaged by the madness around me—you try growing up in a rooming house with a bunch of certified loonies—left me feeling invisible, which, in turn, left me with an unquenchable thirst to be recognized. Hello! I’m over here!

However, just because I am honest about my neurosis does not mean I allow it to rampage, expanding to engulf people and entire cities like The Blob. My narcissism wears Spanx. I control it and I contain it. Policing my own narcissism in an honest way has enabled me—though I do bray it myself—to avoid the extremes of assholism which are so often to be found in some of today’s great narcissists, by which I do, of course, mean John Edwards. By facing the beast head on, and dissecting its various components, I feel I have managed to avoid Howard Hughes-ian extremes of grandiosity, isolation, and persnickety paranoia.

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