He is not being sweet right here, mama. No way. Not sweet at all. I know you’d like to remind him that he has the capacity to be sweet but right now…he’s not.
It’s funny how we do this, how we try to call forth someone’s better self like this in moments of distress. We try and remind a violent person that he’s not usually this way.
I think of Tony’s story about passing a man he knew who was in the process of threatening a crowd of people with, like, Molotov cocktails in hand (I can’t recall the weapon now) and Tony’s response, as he passed by, was not to try and stop the man or remind him that he was usually a very sweet man – but to try and be as ordinary as possible – to somehow shake him out of his state – which is a heightened, extraordinarily, at the edges place – and he just said, “Hey, (Whatever his name was) Good Morning!”
Like the mundane might be the way to bring someone back down to earth.
Sweetness almost never works but we almost always try it.