Filed under: Current Events, perspective, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: bad manners, bullying, cramped planes, frustration, politicians, thin hotel room walls |
by Keith Yancy
At last, some time to write… and, in no particular order, I’m sharing a few of my recent frustrations.
- Plane trips. I’ve been exactly six feet, one-inch tall for the past 26 years or so, but recently, and ONLY recently, I’ve discovered that I’m becoming uncomfortably tall on airplanes. At least it feels that way when I sit down. The leg room on the last few flights seems to be steadily getting smaller and smaller, with more and more people jammed into the same confined space. I know there are people taller than me on these flights, and during the last one, my knees were literally up against the seat in front of me… and that person hadn’t reclined their seat. Higher prices, no food, and now, apparently, no space to sit comfortably. Thanks for putting customers first!
- Politicians. From presidential candidates who could be the poster guys for the “Pick Your Poison” award… to Michigan state politicians scandalized by the word “vagina”… there seems to be so very, very few political figures I respect these days. At the very, very bottom of the political “food chain” is, as always, our illustrious Detroit and Wayne County politicians, who make stupidity and chronic bumbling a true art form. It’s so bad, the Mayor, the City Council, and the Detroit top attorney can’t even agree on who is actually in charge. These political cronies and hangers-on would rather argue endlessly (and collect their paychecks) than do anything to try to keep Detroit from sliding into bankruptcy. For many, including myself, I’ve given up any hope that this collection of fools can do anything useful, and would actually welcome an Emergency Manager. Detroit deserves way, way better than these sorry excuses they call leaders. And all of us — across the country — deserve better choices for who is running for office.
- Bullying kids, and the parents who raise them. Bullying is a funny thing — everyone’s against it, but it sure seems to be a popular problem. Why? For one thing, kids are kids, and some of that is going to happen. But I know that if I learned that my kids were bullying others, my kids would get corrected IMMEDIATELY, and that requisite apologies would be forthcoming. Bullying others is not tolerated in my house, within my family… and my kids know it well. Yet, there are parents out there who somehow believe that it’s better to be dealin’ than receivin’, and thus if their kid’s a bully, then it’s somehow okay. These parents are stupid. The recent punishment for the four boys who bullied the bus monitor (a year’s suspension from school) is a fitting one, and it was encouraging that several (not all) of the parents involved not only made their kids write letters of apology, but apologized themselves. Rightly so. I would have been mortified to be one of those parents. Parents should bear the consequences, and share in the punishment, for their kids’ poor behavior.
- Bad manners. Is it that hard to say “please” and “thank you” to waiters and waitresses? Is it too much to ask to chew with your mouth closed? Don’t you think that — by the time you’re in your 40’s with kids, no less — that trying to cut in front of others in line makes you look like a jackass? Perhaps I’m just naive, but it still surprises me when grown-up, old-enough-to-damn-well-know-better adults display such appallingly bad behavior. Most of the time (especially with the chewing with the mouth open one) I just suffer in silence, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to let some pushy person try to get in front of me in line, like the person who tried (and failed) to do so in St. Louis. Later, this same person — in front of her kids, no less — made some presumptive statement about people hogging all the observation windows in the observation area. Lady, thanks for reminding all of us how not to behave… but unlike yourself, I know that already, so spare me (and others) the example next time.
- Paper-thin hotel room walls. Blech. Recently, I had the pleasure (I thought) of staying in a high-end, posh hotel for a business conference. The kind of place that spares no expense to make visitors comfortable. Unfortunately, the only expense that WAS spared was the one to put some insulation between the rooms of the hotel. I was the victim of (apparently) newlywed next door neighbors, whose vocal amorous episodes were both loud and amazingly frequent. In fact, the walls were so thin, I could actually hear their jokes… and that with both a television and an iPod turned up. 4:40AM, 5:30AM, 1:00PM, 3:00PM, 7:30PM… no time of day or night was safe from this very, very verbal couple. I found myself feeling somehow guilty for being subjected to hearing it. Though I never met them, their stamina and enthusiasm earned my respect, if nothing else. But I’d rather not have heard it at all, and shouldn’t have in a hotel as high-class as the one I stayed in.
- Unmet expectations. Okay, yeah, this is a pretty broad category. But I’m talking about not living up to your own expectations, specifically when it comes to controlling one’s own worry and anxiety about life’s challenges. Having read my Bible enough to appreciate the true “heavy hitters” of faith, i.e., Moses, David, the 12 apostles, Paul, etc., I wish I could have 1/100th of the faith those guys had. But no. Despite constantly reminding myself of the Almighty’s guiding hand, I could lock up the gold, silver AND bronze medal in the Worry Olympics. I worry about everything, constantly. And it drives me absolutely nuts. If Daniel could handle the lions’ den, Samson kill 1,000 enemies with a donkey’s jawbone, and Paul get shipwrecked three times (not to mention amicably attending his own beheading), you’d think I could stop sweating a 30-minute business meeting in which I would suffer no bodily harm. And yet, I worry. I may never learn, which frustrates me even further.
Normally, I try to stay positive on this blog, but I just wasn’t up to slapping a happy face on things today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll do my best to be more upbeat in my next post.
Until next time… : |