Of course, their wit was trumped by my own and I left them speechless in the end, but this is not a new phenomenon and I feel it necessary to address this form of insecurity. Nowhere did I put down any of them nor did I say anything that should have made them feel an inclination to attack. Yet, they felt it necessary to engage. Why is that?
It's because people's minds have been poisoned since youth to believe that a high self esteem is not an admirable trait. In other words, if I feel good about myself, that's wrong; I should dwell on all of my weaknesses and white wash all of my strengths because that's what a productive member of society does. Of course, this makes society full of sheep and coward, whilst simultaneously narrowing the quantity of leaders among us.
But I feel that this mindset also stems from a science of the mind; a defect lavished with a need to rationalize and compensate. Individuals who don't have the same confidence find those who do to be intimidating and, as such, try to make themselves feel better by silencing candor. What this means is that they feel inferior and to make themselves feel better, they try to tear the confident person down with ad hominem and logical fallacies until that person is as insecure as they are.
By comparing me to others with statements such as "I've seen better", they not only skirt around the fact that I never compared myself to anyone by saying "I'm pretty", but they hope to dwindle my self esteem by forcing me to reevaluate my own sense of self.
And I say that knowing your own strengths (and weaknesses, but that's for a different article), not white washing it and being candid about it is an admirable trait. Naturally, not everyone has a high self esteem, but too many of us succumb to the envy and overcompensating nature of the haters around us and lose our sense of self. This, of course, means that we develop a society full of submissive drones who will never take charge of anything.
So, next time you are feeling good about yourself, aren't bothering anyone and one of these sour grapes tries to ruin your good mood with their negative chi, respond with "Why does my ego intimidate you so much?" Because saying something good about yourself is not the same as saying something bad about someone else and people need to become aware of that.