Dear Mouthy Housewives,
A good friend of mine thinks that 9/11 was a conspiracy. Not only do I disagree with her, I find her views disrespectful. She doesn’t talk about it often, but knowing that she believes it made me lose respect for her. Should I clear the air or let it be?
Confused in Cleveland
Dear Confused in Cleveland,
First of all, I have to admit that there’s nothing I like better than a good conspiracy theory. The mystery, the intrigue, the far reaching, sneaky cover-ups by suave men in fedoras who sit in black cars obscured by swirling cigarette smoke—what could be better? It’s like watching The X-Files before Mulder dumped Scully and moved on to that horrible Californication and a few months of tacky sex rehab.
I really thought The Truth Was Out There.
Anyway, while I do think it’s fun to speculate on some of the more crazy conspiracy theories around, ones like “Michael Jackson and LaToya are the same person,” “Joy Behar was created when scrambled eggs got mixed with rabbit DNA in a Finnish laboratory,” and “Eating a crapload of Girl Scout cookies grants you eternal life,” I definitely draw the line at giving prudence to some of the more whack-a-doo ones. You know, the ones that involve people actually dying.
But let’s look at the big picture because the real issue here isn’t whether or not your friend’s beliefs are correct—the real issue is that you’ve now lost respect for her because of them. If you think this is a deal breaker in your friendship, then perhaps the best thing to do is just back away from her a bit. At least that’s what I did when I found out my friend Sherry Tompkins was trying to get me involved in a pyramid scheme involving fake Italian handbags back in ’99. (First clue: Prada isn’t spelled with two d’s.)
However, if you think you can still remain friends despite having such disparaging viewpoints, then you need to tell her in no uncertain terms that you very strongly disagree with her conspiracy ideas, find them offensive, and you do not want her to talk about them with you again EVER. If your friendship is as important to her as you think it is, I’m sure she’ll adhere to your wishes and never bring it up again.
And if she does, let me know. I hear Sherry Tompkins needs a partner to help her sell some Goochi purses.