another creative writing paper i had to do...this one was a research paper on ourselves, using people who know us as sources...i used Lowercase's Seeker's and Lucius's opinions of me in the paper, so i figured it would be curteous to post it if anybody cares to read it...also, i have taken out or slightly changed a few quotes or words (particularly last names), so as not to reveal too much information...also it was written at 4am the night before it was due, so the grammer gets messed up a few places, and my thinking might not always be collected, so please excuse that...anyway here it is:

I am I

What is or is not reality? The way that we perceive reality, may or may not reflect that of what is, in truth, reality. People who are Schizophrenic perceive things that, to the majority of us, do not exist. Is that to say, then, that those things only they see are not real? To those people, these 'nonexistent' things are as real as anything else in their world. The fact that each of us perceives the world, and everything in it, in a unique way presents a question: what is truly the real world?

One good example of this, is how a single person can be perceived differently to each person that they know, in some cases, these separate instances of the same individual vary widely enough to almost be considered entirely different individuals. I am not such a severe case, however, it does remain true, that not everyone sees me as the same person. It is almost as if each person's view of reality is a tiny reflection of what is truly real. This reflection of reality may be more or less distorted, but usually most of the facts coincide between each person's reflection of reality. Due to this 'reflecting of reality' it is basically as if there are multiple copies of myself, running around in each person's head. These various versions of myself are not all the same, but generally the main facts remain the same. However, another factor to this, is how well does each person know me, which is to say, that the farther a person's mirror is from the source of a particular reflection, in this case that being the reflection of myself, the more muddled the reflection will come out.

Many of my friends are people I have never met in person. I spend a lot of my time on the internet, and it is only natural for a person, such as myself, to interact with other people. Over time, friendships may form, even if I have never seen the person I am talking to, and they have never seen me. However, our personality comes through, in our words. One such person I know only by the pseudonym 'Lowercase Society' or LC for short. LC is a 17 year old. He lives in Greece, studying abroad. Lowercase described me as a person who has "A personality that can mold to any others." and that, "because [I] [am] very flexible," I am "A good opponent in a game of fun." which is his was of saying a battle of wit. So, we can take to mean from this, that Lowercase considers me a good intellectual opponent, and that I am adaptable to various personalities. He continued, saying "he is very young in his heart, and in mind. This can be viewed as a disadvantage, and is in some ways, but it is more of an advantage, because as [he] approache[s] old age, [he] will have a young heart and mind, and people will love [his] company, as [he] will be able to relate to any age group." But what does it mean to be young at heart? By this Lowercase means that I am a person who likes to joke, and not be too serious. This is the adaptive personality he described me as having earlier, as someone who is always serious can hardly appeal to most people. How distant is Lowercase's mirror from the object he is trying to reflect? Well, you cannot tell without comparing his reflection of me to that of someone else's.

Another one of my online friends is a man by the name of Dave, but I know him better as 'Seeker'. He is a very fatherly person, and that spills over into his conversations online. Seeker described me as a person "who likes to socialize and get into mischief." saying that I am "always a joker." So, Seeker thinks I have a sort of 'class clown' personality. He continued, going deeper into my persona, saying "You seem to like helping people…" It is odd that he thinks this of me, as he is the only person that isn't related to me that got this impression. "You are an artist and so see the world a little more differently than the rest of us." This statement he made of me is reminiscent to the mirrors I have been talking about. He seems to think that my mirror is slightly different than that of most people. He seems to believe that I am "a little sensitive and people hurt [my] feelings sometime, but [I] seem to bounce back easily and don't hold a grudge." He continues to say that I have "a medium frustration level, that is, [I] don't fly off immediately when something eludes [me], it takes a little while before the aggravation gets to [me]." So, Seeker believes me to be a 'class clown' sort of person, who has an emotional level, just below the surface. That I like to help others, and sometimes get hurt or aggravated. Comparing this reflection to that of Lowercase's we see that both instances of me seem to be jokesters. However, while Lowercase sees an adaptive personality, Seeker seems to look beneath that to a more sensitive person, suggesting that all Lowercase is seeing is a façade. Lowercase also makes no mention of my 'artistic' point of view; whether this portion of Lowercase's reflection of me is missing or simply not spoken about is not known.

A third online friend of mine goes by the name Lucius. Lucius is a 20 year old lad who lives just outside of Germany. He is heavily into the spiritual side of things. A very emotional person, Lucius is a great person to discuss the emotional aspect of things with. When writing about me, he felt the need to make it abundantly apparent that he may be jumping to conclusions as he doesn't believe he knows me very well. Like Seeker, Lucius sees two sides of me. On the one hand, Lucius says "You have a great sense of humor sometimes, though sometimes I think you…make lame jokes that are just not funny to a lot of people." He concludes this thought saying I am "a funny guy overall to be honest." Lucius's 'other side' he sees of me is not a more sensitive side, unlike the alter-ego Seeker sees in me, Lucius see an "intelligent side." a good person to have "a nice conv[ersation]" with, who has "a good opinion." He concludes saying that, overall "You are a person that sets goals, and then really wants to reach them, with a strong will." Lucius's reflection of me retains that same jokester quality, but he sees another side to his reflection, a side that is more intellectual and opinionated.

The only point of common ground among these three reflections is the comedian quality they all seem to see in me. Perhaps it is due to the unique way each of these three people sees life that causes my reflection in each of their minds to vary so greatly? Or perhaps it is the distance their mirrors are from me. A look at some of my friends should prove to show reflections of me that are more similar in nature than those reflections of me in the minds of people I've never actually met. Sarah is someone I talk to on occasion, but she didn't have a whole lot to say about me. "[She] is very awesome." doesn't really say much about my personality, but rather her opinion of my personality, and without any other context, this bit of information is useless. However, she also said I "make [her] laugh." This is still the single point of similarity these reflections of me have. Wesley continues this theme, saying I "express a very entertaining sense of humor that always surprises and amuses [her]." and that I express "a higher level of thinking that [he] respect[s]." He expands his reflection, however, saying that I am "a very interesting creature" whose "behavior is unpredictable, for at times she will be innocently drawing happy faces and fuzzy woodland animals, and then suddenly alter her actions to display dreadfully violent images of people doing horrible things to the cute creatures that once lived peacefully in solitude." This "brings a much needed bizarre spark to the monotony of everyday life that I (Wesley) thoroughly enjoy." Jackie, on the other hand, doesn't have these points of similarity in her reflection of me. She does, however, say that "(quote removed)" suggesting that I am intelligent. However, Jackie seems to contradict herself, and says "[She] is an idiot." She continues on to say that I am "immature" and that "[I] need to grow up, and get a life." Lowercase was the one who said I had a "young heart and mind." so, there is a similarity between Jackie's reflection of me, and Lowercase's reflection of me there. Again, there is a lot of variation between the reflections of me. Are these simply various aspects of the same one person? Are they distortions of reality?

Perhaps how long these people have known me is an issue, as both my internet friends, and my school friends have not known me for a great length of time. One would think that, over time, all aspects of a single person would become known, so that only variations in each person's perspectives remained to distort the reflection. Mrs.Hilson was my 6th grade English teacher. She knew me as a person back a long time ago, as opposed to over that period of time. However, her opinion of me remains valid, as people usually do not completely uproot their innermost personality, and as such, she knew me back before I had fully formed all my opinions and outer-layers that have been seen by others. Mrs.Hilson described me as a person who "will always do as he chooses." continuing on to say "She could never be forced to do anything that was not of interest to her." This view of me has not been reflected by others yet, and perhaps it is because it was more obvious, or perhaps simply because this was her view of me. She does, however, say that I "was a very intelligent student." which is one of the common points mentioned by Jackie an others. So, even then, the reflection she had of me was that of an intelligent person, however this is the only similarity between her reflection of me, and those reflections in others' minds. William is a neighbor of mine, whom I've known for the past 11 years. We used to be good friends, but have since gone our separate ways. Will starts by agreeing with Wesley, saying "Werburn is a unique individual." He then concurs with Mrs.Hilson stating that "He doesn’t care what other people think. He does what he wants and what makes him happy." however, he expands, saying "He is very intelligent and it helps him to overcome those who try to influence him into doing what might be popular." So now we have quite a few common themes. The various reflections of myself seem to have commonalities in being funny. Also, many of the reflections are intelligent individuals, and many of them are said to be unique, or as Will put it, "No one is ever like Werburn." Maybe Jeff, my closest friend, would know me better? Alas, Jeff had little to say, however he did say I am "a really clever person." which is one of the common themes among my reflections. The only other pertinent comment he said was that I "drive [him] insane with [my] hunger for power."

These reflections are only getting more and more varied, with a few common themes among them. Perhaps a person who is more intimately involved with myself will have a reflection of me that goes a bit deeper into my personality. Niko, is my current significant other, and really the only person I have ever gone out with for any length of time. Our relationship started only last summer, but I knew Niko a year previous. While Niko has not known me for a long time, Niko's reflection should be one that gets underneath the outermost layers of my personality. Niko states that I am "one of the few people who can truly boast any sort of true understanding of the interworkings of his life and self, as well as how to deal with people." which is to say that I know myself, and who I am, and know how to deal with others in social situations. Lowercase seemed to touch on this, but Niko delves deeper, saying "He is someone that I believe can handle anything." While Lowercase had simply said I had an adaptive personality towards others, Niko states that I am adaptive to life in general, and am adaptive to others in that I know how to handle them. She touches on one of the themes of my reflections, saying that "with his sharp analytical skills and unfailing conviction in his beliefs, nothing can stop him from reaching his goals." This approaches the intelligence similarity that many of the reflections share, and also shares a similarity with Lucius's reflection, in saying that nothing can stop me from reaching my goals. Niko concludes saying that I am "a pure soul."

Perhaps the reflection of me that had been created in the mind of my significant other is not so useful, as one might imagine it would be distorted from overlooking flaws, and seeing only parts Niko might want to see. Maybe someone who has known me my entire life would have an accurate reflection. My grandmother, had little to say about me, most likely due to her dislike of writing from her arthritis. She did say, however, that I am "always energetic and happy." although I can be "stubborn at times." both of these aspects of the reflection that lives in her mind are unique thus far to her. Thus, little can be concluded from her analysis as of yet. My mother might be another good source for an accurate reflection. She said that I "was always a happy guy with an easy smile." carrying on the new theme, that I am generally a happy person. She then went on to talk extensively on how, after I had begun school, I "became a defender of the weak and downtrodden." saying that "although small in stature, [I] was mighty in courage, and never sat idly by when anyone was being picked on." This continues the point Seeker brought up that I like to help people. The reflections bring to light the point that I seem to be a happy person, and strengthens the commonality that I like to help people.

However, even when reading this, you must remember, even my own reflection of myself is still a reflection. People can have warped perspectives about themselves, thinking themselves to be ugly or fat, or that they're a bad person when they aren't. However, comparing the reflection of myself I have to those reflections of myself presented by others, I would say that my brother, Marc's reflection of me is most accurate. He agrees with Wesley and others when they say I am unique, putting in "to say that Werburn walks to the beat of a different drum would be an understatement." he goes on to say that "This is probably his most defining attribute, the one which governs his actions and relations." I suppose this says that Will, Wesley, and Mrs.Hilson were definitely on the right track then. However, Marc takes it a step further, saying "He also doesn't really care for anyone's approval and just does what he wants." However, this seems to go against what other have said, that I care for others, Marc corrects this statement further by saying "This is not to say he doesn't care about others - merely that most of the time he's fairly apathetic about anything he's not focused on at the moment." he then leads this into another point of commonality, "Werburn deeply cares about others, sometimes to a fault. He has a strong tendency to befriend the so-called underdog." This reinforces the point first made by Seeker that I like to help others. Another common point Marc goes over is that I "also can be very dedicated." This was stated by Lucius, and was also touched on by my grandmother, even though she looked at it negatively, calling it stubbornness. Marc also says that I am "very smart, and [am] able to pick up things quickly." This point of intelligence was one of the more major themes that most people's reflections had. Lastly, Marc says "I think he makes me laugh, really laugh, more than anyone else I know." which hits the last major point that almost everybody's reflection of me had.

So what does this all mean? If all these are varied reflections of the one same person, what am I really like? Well, you could try to say that, since there were a few common themes, helpfulness, happiness, intelligence, dedication, uniqueness, and the ability to make people laugh, that the real me is most likely a person with these qualities. However, if all the mirrors in a funhouse are bent to make a person look fat, are they really fat? not necessarily. Truly, not even I myself can tell you what kind of person I am, but I can tell you what kind of person I think I am. That person is the me, the reflection of myself, living in my reflection of my world, my reality. The reflection of me running around in your reality is most likely different than the reflection running around in Seeker's reality, or Marc's reality, but what is truly important is this, a person is however you perceive them to be. Your world is however you perceive it to be. If I perceive that sports are really important, than to me, in my world, they are important. Whatever may or may not be truth, or reality, doesn't matter as much as the way we look at that truth.