manners


Ahhhhhh Spring. Millions of students are in the process of finishing up the year with finals. Those stress-filled tests that are designed to hold students accountable and to sort them from smart to not as smart. This is human nature folks. Let’s see how we measure up against one another.

Another way we judge people is by the TV shows they watch. My inspiration for this post came from the show Greek. Judge me if you will, but I like it. One of the characters, Dale, is a science genius and a conservative Christian. So he is your basic geek (yes, that’s a judgment). When the show started, he was against the Greek system and had pretty strong views about homosexuality. Over the course of two seasons, he hasn’t compromised his beliefs but he hasn’t turned away from or unfairly judged people who are in the Greek system or who are gay. Two of his best friends fall into those categories. So it is possible to keep your principles without judging others too harshly.

In the last episode Dale was upset that his art history teacher was going to have essay questions on the midterm exam. When Dale heard this his response was, “Essays? No, no. That leaves way too much room for teacher interpretation and frankly this guy’s kind of a nut bag.” That’s right Dale. Teacher gets to subjectively judge you. And to all you students out there—that’s life. Sometimes you get nut bags and sometimes you get lifelong mentors.

But hey, it’s good practice. Because for the rest of your life you’ll be judged on all sorts of things. For example, what you find funny, what you like to watch on TV, what you do for a living, what kind of car you drive, your opinions, and very relevant to my current life—your resume. You really shouldn’t worry about any of that though. What you should focus on is how you treat others. Do you judge people unfairly? While you are pondering that thought, take a look at this picture of me in third grade. If I was judged harshly based on my clothes, I would not have made many friends. (By the way Mom, thanks for letting me out of the house looking like this.) The girl next to me happens to be one of my friends, even after all these years. I’m taller than her now but she always had better fashion sense and never cared if I wore ugly shoes. Show the love people and good luck on those exams, applications, interviews, and first dates.

Chadds_Ford_elementary_3rd_grade

There are certain things at which I excel. Meeting deadlines, being organized, and sending cards are just a few. And there are things at which I stink. I like to think of the stinky ones as things I just haven’t practiced enough yet. Mostly because they are boring and I don’t like them. (The truth is the reason I probably don’t like them is because I stink at them.) It’s a vicious cycle really. One of those things that I dislike doing is maintenance. Calling repair people, fixing things, etc. So imagine how happy I’ve been the last couple of weeks fixing up my beach house so we can rent it out to pay the bills. (Oh and the nasty letter I got from my VA HOA saying I need to repair my steps.) Oh joy, oh joy, oh joy.

Today I had a fan-dang-tastic conversation with a woman from the company that is providing our house with wireless Internet access. Not only had we already been through the exercise of setting up the account a week ago but English was not her native tongue. That didn’t bother me so much. Some people get pretty upset asking customer service reps to repeat themselves every other sentence, but that was the least of my annoyance with this call. I won’t go into details—let’s just say that some things never change.

Customer service should be King, but alas it’s not. What do you do when you are treated poorly by a company? With the possible exception of the post office—that evil government organization that doesn’t seem to have to answer to anyone for some reason—we could make a conscience effort to take our business elsewhere. Laziness sometimes intervenes in those plans but I can be stubborn, so all you companies out there who are getting my business—take note! Not that it would matter. They would probably just get a bail-out package and take a vacation to the Caribbean. In any case, wish me luck—I’ve got to order and install a dishwasher tomorrow. (The one that was supposed to be here a week ago.)

I know this is supposed to be a fun blog, so I apologize for the rant. There is one more thing I need some help clarifying though. Why is it that when I order McNuggets at McDonalds they always give me four, six, or ten orders of those $1 boxes? When I ask for six McNuggets, I don’t mean six orders of the four McNugget packages. I honestly don’t get why it’s so hard to understand that.

Now it’s your turn. What’s your favorite customer service story?

 funny-pictures-cat-ignores-your-phone-call

Technorati Profile

In my last post I mentioned that I really like kids. I’ve changed my mind. There are two in my neighborhood that are now on the naughty list. The circumstances surrounding the bird flipping aren’t important. What concerned me was the total lack of respect and manners both tots displayed. As much as I’d like to blame their parents, I won’t. On that note, I’d like to suggest to everyone that we seriously start thinking about how our actions affect those around us.

During the last several months the media has pounded us with stories of corruption and greed—your basic doom and gloom. It’s pretty depressing. And being unemployed, I need positive influences in my life, not negative party poopers. (Poop is such a funny word. Not as funny as poopy though. But I digress…) Since I’ve been laid off, I’ve noticed a wave of generosity, solidarity, and kindheartedness from total strangers (as well as my loving peeps—thanks everyone). This kindness is just what I’ve needed. So I’d like to give a shout out to some of these organizations and movements. You go people! And next time some ten year old flips you the bird, show them kindness in return.

JobAngels, a community of strangers dedicated to helping others find jobs.

Helpothers.org, a portal dedicated to small acts of kindness.

Do you have more examples? Share them!

« Previous Page