I have long thought of myself as a cynic. Polyanna was my spiritual opposite. Not that I always looked on the dark side, but I recognized that I was far from an optimist. Though I was not so paranoid as to be unable to trust people, I always kept an eye out for some angle.
Over time I learned that my cynicism was actually a frustrated idealism. I love humanity, and think highly of humans. However, my experiences with humans have been far from ideal. I recognize the potential in individual humans and humans as a species. Such phenominal potential!
Such mediocre results. We are capable of so much, yet do so little.
Still, over time much good has come of humanity. In spite of individual frailty and an astounding potential for stupidity when working in groups. Indeed, the wonder of humans as individuals and as a species seems to be the amazing capacity to make some progress in spite of all of the negatives.
I see that potential, and long for it. In society. In others. In myself. I am often disappointed, and frequently frustrated. When I express that frustration, I sound cynical.
Yet I do not abandon hope.
I can't quite be like Polyanna. Nor can I quite be Eeyore.
Perhaps the best I can hope for is to be like Samuel Clemens. I guess that's not so bad.
1 day ago