Not too long ago I had a conversation with someone on "my side of the aisle" in which he took issue with my inability to ascend to actual outrage at one of the many issues which, rightly, inspire outrage these days. "How you see it, if you aren't outraged?" was the gist of his question.
Stuck for a true bon mot of an answer, I just said, "Interesting. I just find it interesting."
"How very zen of you," was his reply.
Last Saturday night I found myself seated at the Fox News end of a table of fellow MacArthur High School Class of '61 graduates. I just wanted one last glass of wine to top off my evening, and one couple among them had sprung to my rescue in the matter of a flat tire earlier in the day so I felt myself among friendlies, if not actual friends.
I sipped my wine and listened to a conversation about the uselessness of "going green," including a rant about recycling inefficiencies (there were some salient points, but I don't think the answer is to abandon recycling).
I didn't argue with them. We had all contributed a page or so of verbiage outlining the past 50 years of our lives, so they knew that an odd duck had come among them. After a while, one or two of them started looking at me as if expecting an argument of some sort.
Feeling a bit of pressure to respond, I finally said, "I'm listening. Just listening. It's interesting."
I felt very zen.