It’s What You Do to Me

I’m listening to music from We the Kings and thoughts pop into my head about teaching a class for adults titled Adult Etiquette in Polite Company. (I know…It’s the way my brain works.)

Every day I encounter hundreds of rude people, and I often wonder: Do they know that they are being rude? I’m not allowed to be rude to them so why do I have to put up with it? In a so-called civilized society, why is it that the established hierarchy is allowed to berate a newcomer to their crowd, when he doesn’t conform to their rules (when he doesn’t even know the rules)? Just because you don’t filter your comments, and you may appear rude to others, does that justify anyone getting upset? I want to ask them this question: “When does rude behavior justify rude behavior?”

When did we all lose sight of a polite society? Didn’t the seniors of today grow up in the same time as my parents? Did they not grow up in a middle class society? Or, are they all richer than me and hang out in the company of other sorority members, or another isolated and irreverent system?. Did they never relate to the working class of people?

If these seniors want others to turn on their filters why don’t they turn on theirs as well? And, why aren’t we brave enough to confront the rude person calmly and tell them what is and isn’t appropriate behavior? Why do we need to get the authorities involved? What happened to people solving their own problems calmly and rationally? Are we so isolated in our living, only thinking of ourselves, that we can’t care about others’ opinions and views, even if they are different from ours?

In Renea Winchester’s book, In the Garden with Billy: Lessons About Life, Love & Tomatoes, she asks, “When did the invisible shift in integrity happen? When did people start caring more about themselves, filling their lives with expensive things, unable to see the suffering of others? And more important, will they continue to serve themselves and ignore the needy?”

I submit that everyone you meet will broaden your views. You may not agree with them, but they can touch your lives if you let them. I never forget anyone that I’ve met. They were put in my path for a purpose, so I learn something new with every chance encounter. If someone needs a helping hand, I help them even if it’s just to talk to them. If they are truly dysfunctional, I seek help for them. It’s up to them if they take it. And, if they’re rude, I’m not rude back. If they don’t listen to me, I will exclaim that they are entitled to their opinion, but I disagree with them, and will be happy to discuss it at a later time. It may not resolve their issues, but I’ve given them a chance, and then I move on. So I ask everyone to take a chance, and then move on! Broaden your perspective. And, don’t get The Man involved unless absolutely necessary. Promote love and peace.

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One thought on “It’s What You Do to Me

  1. This was a great missive! I can’t help but believe that “groups” become way too comfortable in their setting(s) and feel they have free reign in passing judgment on whatever floats by.

    Unfortunately, I think it’s human nature that promotes this kind of existence and the ease of accepting this comfort zone is proportional to the “high”, “medium” and “low” of one’s brow.

    I shudder to think of the many instances I was dumb enough to “prejudge” someone on some dopey trite characteristic only to find I was completely off base and that person turned out to be a true joy with much to give.

    Long ago my Grandmother told me to learn to “defer” in many situations as those wanting to display their importance AKA ignorance, at other’s expense, would quickly step forward. One of these days I’ll tell you of the “test” I was instructed to perform on a perspective “new” hire for an independent oil company downtown Houston. The guy was a recent grad with a MBA blah blah blah and very polished but true character traits quickly surfaced during a generous 3 hour lunch.

    It wasn’t good!

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