I’m a grownup now. It’s something I wanted to be when I was a kid, hating the fact that I had to go to bed at a prescribed time, that I had to eat certain foods for dinner and for breakfast and so on. I waited for it for years (even, at one point, cleverly trying to prove that I was eighteen when I was really seventeen and thus legal for a lot more goodies than I really was)… and now I’m finally old enough to be able to stay up until 2:00 in the morning reading books or playing computer games, and old enough to decide that I can have cold pizza for breakfast if I want to, and chocolate cake with ice cream for dinner.

Of course, now I’m also grown up to realize that there are consequences to some of that behavior. So, perhaps, cold pizza isn’t good for breakfast every morning, and maybe chocolate cake with ice cream for dessert every night could have roly-poly consequences.

There are a lot of privileges to being grown up that I’ve waited for for a long time. And there are still some that I’m waiting for, that haven’t quite materialized yet.

Maturity, for example.

I mean, heck, I know that if I lived on a diet of pizza and ice cream, I’m going to get even fatter than I am now. That’s a consequence. I’m mature enough to know about that consequence and make choices that will avoid those consequences. And quite a lot of the time I do make those choices. Not always, of course — sometimes what you really need is chocolate cake and ice cream for dinner. But I can still make the choice in full awareness of those consequences.

No, I’m talking about the kind of maturity that makes you realize that maybe you shouldn’t do or say certain things because you don’t have a big enough picturre, and that you’re probably blurting out something because you’re angry and even if you’re justified in part of what you’re saying you really ought to shut the hell up because there’s a lot that you’re wrong about, and you’re forgetting important facts.

In short, the kind of maturity that, if I had it in sufficient quantity, would have kicked in last Friday and restrained my fingers from typing my last entry. Or would have prevented me from clicking that “Publish” button. Or something.

I made Benthic Creatures out to be much worse than it really is. It wasn’t all a picnic, of course; there were lies told, and there are motivations that I never understood. But it wasn’t all deliberate; I think there was miscommunication, and I think some bad decisions were made, by me and by others. And while I disliked many of the management policies, I was wrong to make it look like all of the managers at Benthic Creatures were bad people. And I exaggerated unforgivabely when I wrote that I would not consider doing business with any of them ever again.

The truth is, there are people at Benthic Creatures that I was sorry to leave, and many of them were among the management. And among those are people whose integrity and professionalism I would never question, and for whom I have the highest respect. Nobody’s perfect, but I would not hesitate to do business with them if I have the opportunity to do so in the future. Some bent over backwards to make my experience with the company more bearable, working hard to rearrange schedules that they didn’t have to rearrange, and spending hours explaining policies to me in ways that made sense, when they could have simply said, “Because that’s the way it is and you have no right to question.”

See, if I had the kind of maturity that I’m talking about, I would have realized that I should have been gracious and expressed my appreciation for those people. I hurt feelings, I know, but I think I did worse by calling into question, publically, the integrity and professionalism of people who really didn’t deserve it — who deserved the opposite, in fact.

So, I don’t have the maturity to stop myself from making a fool of myself and saying things that I shouldn’t have. But I do have the maturity to apologize, and to do so with sincerity.

And so, I’m sorry.

I wonder if there’s any ice cream left for dinner?