So I often hear from my “intellectual” Mormon friends how they feel this crushing weight of isolation and judgemental pressure from their fellow Saints. I don’t really get it. Now, lots of people tell me about this, so obviously there is something to these experiences. I just honestly don’t experience it myself. In part, I think that this is because I am not as intellectual as my oppressed intellectual friends. On the other hand, I am capable of some serious sustained pedantry and pretentious posturing. I can walk the walk and talk the talk. Yet I don’t feel any social pressure or ostracism of any kind. Really.
I have decided that is mainly because I am clueless. Perhaps I have been brutally snubbed and ostracized for many years and have not noticed. This is a very real possiblity. I tend to be really obtuse socially and frequently don’t pick up on subtle social clues. Hence, short of explicit statements like, “I hate you and I want you to go to hell,” I am not sure that I am likely to pick up on signs of social disapproval. In those cases where people actually have come up to me in the foyer and said, “I hate you and I want you to go to hell” (it hasn’t happened more than half a dozen times in the last year) I have completely missed out on any pre-denuciation social clues. As a result, my tendency has been to assume that these people are either mentally unbalanced or confusing me with someone else.
Hence, I go about my annoying and pedantic life, carefully insulated by a bubble of social ignorance. It leads me to the conclusion, however, that maladjusted intellectual misfits within Mormonism do not suffer from maladjustment at all. Their problem is that they are too well adjusted. If the nerdiness was just a little deeper, they would live happier lives.