I have a God complex. This has been gently pointed out to me by a coworker who has the misfortune to go out with me on the field almost on a weekly basis. I looked surprised while she continued:
“You can’t apologize about everything under this Universe, because you are not its creator. Only God is.”
Apparently, I had said “sorry” one too many times and she was sick of hearing it. It was kind of strange, because I thought that saying “sorry” was a sign of humility and good will, even if the fault did not lie with me. And I wanted to show my good will and I wanted to show how humble I was to ask forgiveness of these people so below my own intelligence, who could not see what the big picture was and how a simple word could change so many things and attitudes…
Yep, I have a God complex. Instead of having a low opinion of self, I actually have a very high opinion of self and a very low opinion of surroundings which cannot appreciate properly a gem like me. after all I am the center of the world and I pity the fool who does not get it. (Thanks Mr. T)
It comes from being Albanian, when one is taught since early girlhood to ask forgiveness because sure one so young has to have done something wrong. Besides parents and elders are never wrong, so it is surely the child who is the culprit consciously or unconsciously. The apologetic magic word is stuck on anyone’s lips. We even start a counter argument or an insult by “I apologize for saying this, but I think you are wrong/your mother is a piggy from Momli”. Nobody knew up to now why we did this. Now it is clear. All Albanians have a God complex, we are just taught to curb the arrogance.
Sometimes, I actually feel proud of myself for being in a position to fool the other person into thinking that I am a spineless wimp. It will make destroying them that much sweeter. But then I can’t truly destroy anybody, can I? So back I go to asking for forgiveness from people I should be forgiving. Too Buddha for you? I thought so, you mosquito brain, burger eating, rug munching, illiterate bum. Ooo, I apologize, was I too harsh?
The other reason is the fact that English has two words, one asking for forgiveness “sorry” and one actually asking for further clarification or permission “excuse”, whereas Albanian has only one “me fal/ni”. In my mind, these two are always interlocked on a mad race from brain to tongue and I never know what will come our next, like “sorry me?” to the nigerian bag seller on 5th and 18th, or “I am so excused” to my boss while I was groveling for a raise.
I come back to my coworker with an explanation that leaves her glazed and dazed after a couple of minutes, even if my English is perfect and my accent tolerable.
“Oh,” I say “I am so sorry!”
“Yes” she answers “I know. Put your seatbelt on, God.
And off we go, God and doubting Peter navigating the streets of the Bronx