“I’m sorry too, Dimitri. I’m very sorry. Alright! You’re sorrier than I am! But I am sorry as well. I am as sorry as you are, Dimitri. Don’t say that you are more sorry than I am, because I am capable of being just as sorry as you are. So we’re both sorry, alright? Alright.” — President Muffley on the phone with Premier Kissoff in “Dr. Strangelove”
I begin by noting that at present, as so often in the past, I’m sorry. Yes, I am very, very sorry. It was all my fault and I am sorry for it all.
I am sorry, as always, for what I said. It was thoughtless and rude. It wasn’t really what I meant or felt in my heart. Many have taken my remarks to mean other than what I said. Why, I even meant them to mean other than what they meant when I said them.
Well, the damage is done and I can’t undo the past. All I can do is stand here strapped in the pillory of the present as all those whom I have so wrongly and without malice slandered cry like the little girly-men they are, even the girls. But their pain is now my pain. I cringe to see them writhe with the bleeding agony of those raw wounds I ripped open by my harsh and unconsidered remarks.
I feel really bad about this. I feel even worse that I, through my abject failure to realize how deeply the dull hatchet of my speech would chop into them, even, yea, down to the living blue-veined bone — that I simply stood by and allowed the burning salt of my senseless scorn to pour without limit into their raw and festering souls. I am, as I said, deeply sorry and feel bad besides.
In passing, I would like to note for the record, that I did not know the gun was loaded.
But I have heard the rising torrent of justifiable outrage; the howls of those whose most sacred, festering and inane ideological beliefs I have eviscerated with the senseless whirring chain-saw of my words. To them I offer, in deep and abject humility — since I am, because I spoke those words, lower than a cockroach’s stool stuck to the bottom of a homeless hermit’s shabby sandal in the storm drains of Las Vegas — my most sincere if unworthy apology. I have heard the skin-shuddering shrieks of those who have been sliced into bloody gobbets of flesh by my remarks. Though I am unworthy to feel that pain, I feel it still as if it were a red-hot 3/4 inch Makita drill bit driven into the base of my skull and left there set on “Wash-Rinse-Repeat.”
We live in such a craven, soft, moist and testosterone-lite society that it would be wise to always be apologizing for something you either have said or may say. In America these days we are a bunch of sorry sons-of-bitches — male or female — and we’d best be saying we’re sorry all the time.
So, well, I am sorry. I apologize. I didn’t think about what I said when I said it. I hurt feelings when all I meant to do was to either maim, kill, or tenderize. I deeply regret that I diminished your self-esteem. I regret even more that I left you alive and able to talk to the news media over the noise of your sucking chest wound.
But since that is the case, please accept these following sentiments as my boilerplate apology, and remember to refer to them often in the decades to come:
I come to you today penitent, conscience-stricken, regretful and contrite. I have been touched by your pain and deeply regret my words. I repent them with every shred of my soul. I am, for having hurt your feelings and bruised your tender buttons, a base and abject man mortified by my cheesy, contemptible, insignificant,. shabby, small, and pathetic being. I know now the low things I have said and I am filled with remorse, melancholy, and self-reproach. If I could have myself flogged fleshless by an flock of Carmelite nuns on Methamphetamine I would so. But I can’t locate those sisters right now, so I must continue to apologize.
I therefore continue to apologize.
I am so wretched to have said the bad words to you. They may well have been true, but I forgot that your feelings, no matter how puerile, always trump the truth in this world. So I admit that even though they were true, my words were unworthy of me and hurtful to you. I see your raw suppurating feelings oozing to the top of your mind and erupting from your mouth wrapped around your screams. I shall carry that Polaroid with me for the rest of my days right next to the organ donor card in my wallet. Can I fill one out for you?
But I digress.
I am compelled by my inner idiot to say that I bleed for you, wish only to console you, empathize with you, and open my heart in an anguished lament that my words, wittingly or unwittingly, have raised upon your soul these unlanced boils of your metaphysical angst. It is my hope you will allow me to lance them and to bandage them in the saline soaked cloth of a this apology.
I come before you today an abashed, chagrined, conscience stricken, guilty, shamed, demeaned, crestfallen, humiliated, penitent and mortified man. I can only seek, humbly, that one thing that will make me whole again after ripping the flesh of your feelings so senselessly. That one thing is the infinite balm of your acceptance of this, my guilty apology, and your forgiveness.
In this I hope to be resurrected to the realm of the acceptably human. I live in this hope because I have a deep and abiding faith that although I am really, really sorry, you are the one person in the universe who is a sorrier son-of-a-bitch than I am.
Thank you for letting me share.