The elusive quality which has of late titillated my intellect, at last has a name: sincerity. I watch strange pilgrims laugh unabashedly before looking over their shoulders to see if others are likewise amused. And again, other such enigmas offer sincere compliments, exclaim outright preferences for this or that, entrust gems of vulnerability without self-pity or desperate ploys for affirmation.
Sincerity, I am learning, has a sense of humor without cruelty. It offers encouragement without pity and support without minimizing or aggrandizing the cost. It is far from a gray, even keel. Sincerity is the lion's determined gaze, fierce and in full knowledge of its power. I see you, you earnest remnant, you unfettered few. I see you with plain eyes for you have made yourselves plain. You stand tall, not to emit a proud air, but because your mother taught you to have good posture, and anyway, it's good for the back.