Arrogance is in the eye of the beholder. Regardless of what the dictionary says, if you think me arrogant, there’s no meaningful objection I can, or should, offer.
Someone who knows me well said, basically, “maybe your acute intelligence and impatience for fools and assholes were mistaken for arrogance.”
Funny that: I don’t generally think myself impatient with either fools OR assholes. Hell – some of my best friends are one, the other, or both. But it is true that, in certain circumstances, I am impatient: if your foolishness is harming me – not inconveniencing me, but actively harming me – I think you can fairly expect to feel my wrath. And that may be what happened recently: I have been harmed, as have others (not in a serious way, but in an annoying one) by some others’ foolishness. Rather, by some institutional foolishness that no individual has seen fit to right. And I’ve entered high dudgeon mode.
I learned this particular form of dudgeon from an old friend and colleague and mentor. It wasn’t his most likeable mode. I’m sure it’s not mine.
I’m defensive, though. For Christ’s sake, I tell myself. I’m RIGHT – they’re WRONG.
Which may well be true.
But tactically, it’s rarely wise to tell people that. They often fail to perceive that what they take to be my arrogance is merely the sum of my correct-ness, my confidence, and their stupidity and/or insecurity.
There. Maybe I’ve proven conclusively my arrogance. 😉