Were you one of those kids who always got picked first? Or did you get picked last when gym class chose up teams for a baseball, soccer or dodge-ball game?
It was always good if your best bud was "captain" that day. Then, no matter how good or bad you played, at least you knew you'd get picked early. The disaster days were when your worst sport and your worst enemies came up on the same day. Gradually, all the kids around you would begin to funnel into one team line or the other. You stood there, more and more alone, the wrong kind of stand out -- an obvious reject.
Learning what it feels like to be an outcast is a painful lesson that stays with us all our lives. Having felt the sting of rejection as a helpless child shapes the way we relate to people as adults.
Wonder why some people close down -- avoiding any risk of rejection by never really opening up to others?
Wonder why some people buy their way into popularity and acceptance -- they flatter and cajole, offer foolish...
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