[LMB] OT: Worldview (1)
gwynnepowell at hotmail.com
Tue Dec 20 10:29:56 GMT 2016
From: "A. Marina Fournier" <saffronrose at me.com>
I am speaking to/of a small group of people throughout the (First) world who seem to delight in taking offence at anything they can grab, playing the "more miserable than thou" or one/legion downsmanship. There are also folk who can't see something positive, without ranting about how bleeding-heart or blind, anyone saying such things are. Both factions may be offering flame-bait.?
There are definitely some people who seem to seek out situations where they
will have the chance to be outraged by the reactions of others - this often is
connected to some particular cause they are publicising. It makes it so much
harder for people who have genuine problem, and a serious reason to try to
communicate the difficulty.
When I let vendors online know of an error in a listing, be it spelling, wrong description, wrong photo for the listing described, using tact, I usually blame auto-correct or software glitches. That way I'm not telling them they're stupid (which they aren't), just that something needs to be changed. Sometimes I have more information about what they're selling, and send an FYI or the like, and most appreciate the fact that I've taken time to let them know.
I think sometimes that makes it harder to deal with unfair situations - you try so
hard to be polite, fair, helpful, open-minded, and a warm, kind person - and
then someone arrogantly walks all over you, disrespects you and turns your
good manners against you by taking advantage. (No, before anyone feels bad,
I am SO NOT referring to anyone or any situation here. This board has some of
the nicest people you'd find anywhere, and is one of the best-mannered boards
I've known. I'm not making a snide reference, or slinging off at anyone here.)
Several offensive things said over the course of a meal with an old friend were so hurtful that I couldn't bring myself to talk to him at all, much less about it, for a couple of years. .....I suppose it was an attempt at wit, but that's not how I perceived it.
I cut the worst parts of that - your 'friend' is either incredibly socially inept, or
is extremely insensitive.
My husband got a chance to visit a beach with fairy penguins on it before we even started courting, but when we worked in the same building. He thought they were marvellous fun in their flock behavior. One year, after we were married, and working for Apple, he got some other engineers to walk?in the opposite direction the fish in a column were swimming. Yes, the fish saw what was going on, figured it was a larger school they had encountered, and switched direction. Erm, tangent off.
I adore penguins too. There's always time for a penguin moment.
At some point the limits and controls become so oppressive and intrusive that they
cause resentment, and instead of people trying to show good manners and empathy,
they just give up.
That's when I pitch the perceived behavior and resort to just plain courtesy no matter who, with a real smile. I say and do nice things to random (and some not so random!) strangers when something strikes me to do so: I confess to an addiction to the phrase "You made my day!", and the sudden light in their eyes. Last time I did that, turning over a completed bonus card to the woman behind me, she had just had a Series of Unfortunate Events and had prayed for something to help her improve her attitude. You never know when your timing with be perfect for the recipient.
I actually had someone say "You made my day!" today.
Improving the world, one happy coment at a time.
More information about the Lois-Bujold