Tuesday, July 11, 2006

A wise man once said "Some people do arts and crafts, we judge".

I know that I am a very judgemental person. I am heavily influenced by first impressions and often make snap judgements within literally a minute of meeting/seeing someone. I once even realized that I disliked someone a mere 30 seconds after meeting them simply because they used the word "supposably" in my precense.

As I get older though, I am more often than not proven wrong by my snap judgements on others, and I am happy this is so. It always amuses me in an offhand way when I realize I have judged too hastily. But moreover aren't we all looking for whatever self-assesing moments of clarity we can get as we age?

One moment in particular over the weekend gave me pause to think about my judging nature.

I am at Stop & Shop the other day, picking up flowers, and I am dismayed that an eldery lady sneaks in front of me to snag the only open Self Checkout Stand when she has a two full baskets of food and assorted items and she can plainly see that I only have 1 potted plant. Instantly I hated her. I glowered in line behind her as she repeatedly had to "Key In Code" because she had all veggies and fruit and when she finally gathered her things and left, a cool 15 minutes later, I huffed into place.

She was still bagging her stuff when I scanned and paid for my potted hydrangea and we ended up exiting more or less at the same time. I was oblivious to my surroundings, as I always am when I am in a hurry, and noticed too late a young woman with her leg in a plastic cast, trying to herd her young daughter to the door while carrying two plastic bags filled with food and still maintain her balance on the crutches. The elderly lady who I was just complaining about RUSHED to help her and when the younger lady on the crutches tried to say she was okay, the older lady said "You need help, I intend to give it to you. Aren't we all here to help each other!?". And of course at that point I felt like the biggest asshole on earth for secretly damning that older woman when she was nice enough to help this poor inujured woman while young, somewhat nimble I was pouting my way out of the store.

Seriously, I know I am a jerk. You don't need to tell me.

So I am having this epiphany in the parking lot, about how I shouldn't complain so much about other people, and about how we really are all here to help each other, and how just because someone puts me out doesn't mean it's intentional, and I should try and be a better person.

And I get into my car, very pleased with my new found sense of respect for mankind, and zen state of mind.

And as I pull onto the main road, a Lincoln Continental comes barreling into my lane from the opposite side of the road, for no good reason, and I had to brake SO HARD that the potted hydrangeas I had just bought flew from the passenger seat and hit the dashboard and shattered and dirt went EVERYWHERE all over my front seat.

I missed hitting the car by literally inches.

And who is there honking at ME!? Doing the "slow down" hand gesture?", when she is in the wrong lane going the wrong way and I had been going no more than 20MPH?

An elderly lady, of course.

But, remembering my new found sense of respect and zen state of mind, I calmly, all zen-like, with the scent of burned rubbed still lingering in the air, gave her the finger and then proceeded on my way.

Hey, if that had happened BEFORE my Stop & Shop incident I would have told her "Learn how to fucking drive!".

Baby steps, people, that is what it is all about.


Jolene said...

This post was hil-AIR-ious. you should really refrain from making me laugh at work though! :

Nicky said...

This is funny because I always second-guess my mean first judgements about people and wind up giving them a chance. Then I end up having been right the first time. I should always just go with my gut instinct. If that guy looks like an asshole, he totally is.
By the way, I too HATE HATE HATE when people say "supposably". Unfortunately, two of my friends do it. I also hate "anywheres" and "somewheres". I mean, how many wheres can you have? Some, I guess.

Sarah said...

LOL those are on my list too. My list is actually incredibly long. And you would think this means my grammar/pronounciation is perfect. Not so much...

Sarah said...

p.s. Jolene, good work with hilAIRious. :-P

Big said...

Shit, who cares about the plant, good to see you didn't get hurt.