Thursday, October 25, 2012

Ever So Ungrateful

Ungrateful --adjective -- 1. Not feeling or showing gratitude.  2. Not pleasant or acceptable.

I’m not an ungrateful person, or at least I try very hard not to be.  I appreciate everything I have in life.  My lovely little family--including my mom who raised me to be a fine gentleman, my beautiful wife who I adore more than anything, and my son who is my little Mini Me--they all bring a smile to my face each and every night.  And with Baby Ben arriving soon, I feel very VERY blessed.

And the same goes for my extended family—my siblings and their spouses, my in-laws, my aunts and uncles and cousins.  I’m much closer to some than others, but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate each and every one of them.  I’m very grateful for my friends who have shared some great times with me over the years, and I realize I really need to do a better job with staying in touch with them.

I’m grateful for my employer too, who allows me to put food on the table for my family and gives me meaningful and mostly challenging work to do.  My coworkers are great as well, thanking others for help, showing appreciation where it is due, etc.  Some teams aren’t quite like that, with spiteful people that cause tension and drama, but there is little to none of that in my workplace, and I’m very thankful for that.

But…there’s always a “but”, isn’t there?…some people are, unfortunately, not very grateful for what they have in life.  Take, for instance, the guy from Nuts For You at the Hartslog Festival in Alexandria a couple weekends ago, who as we were walking along browsing the vendors, loudly stated to a coworker, “Stay here so that none of these retards walk into this fire.”  Apparently they had a pot or something on the street where they were roasting nuts, and he had removed the pot but hadn’t doused the flames and hot coals.  People were everywhere, and my three-old-son and I nearly stumbled into his open fire just as he was so eloquently calling us retards.  His fire was literally four inches off the pavement on bricks, and while I noticed that SOMETHING was there and walked around it to avoid it, I didn’t know that it was a FREAKING FIRE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET!  Why not put cones up to block it?  Or have someone stand there BEFORE you remove the pot?  And the fact that he indirectly called me a retard ignited a fire within me.  If we lived in a less-civil society, I’m fairly certain that dude would have met my wrath, and nobody wants a large man expertly trained in martial arts delivering some wrath.  But alas I just walked away, choosing instead to deride him here, in my blog.

But man, what a bozo that guy was.  Calling your potential customers retards?  I’m sure the higher-ups at Nuts for You would just love to hear about that!  And I have a feeling this guy probably loves Ann Coulter and sees nothing wrong with her recent use of the same derogatory term either.  I'm trying my hardest not to bring politics into this post, but ANYONE who uses such a nasty word should have absolutely no influence on anyone else's opinions, especially in a "civilized" society like the U.S., and yet Ann Coulter still has millions of fans.  THAT is disgusting.

Moving on, I was on Twitter yesterday, doing a search of "Altoona" trying to determine which Halloween and Trick or Treat activities might be fun to participate in this week/weekend.  We had already been planning to go to the Safe Trick or Treat night at PSU Altoona last night (which involved entirely too much standing in line), and we were also planning to walk around the neighborhood this evening with some friends.  But I was curious to see if anything else was happening--maybe a haunted house or something local that could be fun, even just for my wife and me tomorrow night perhaps.  But as I was surfing through a few dozen tweets, I ran across this nice little gem:

This person is apparently young herself, a senior in high school from her bio, and so perhaps I can blame her crude remark on immaturity.  That doesn’t do much to lessen the sting of her comment though.  You know, when I was a kid, I couldn’t wait for Trick or Treat.  I loved the idea that I could just walk around and get free candy.  In hindsight I probably should have laid off of eating so much of it, but it was a feel-good time of the year.  And aside from one insensitive jerk who wouldn’t give me and my group of friends candy because we were too old (I think I was 12 at the time), I can’t ever remember any bad experiences from Trick or Treat night.

But wow, Keelie, you must really hate your job to be posting something like this.  It didn't take much searching of your profile to discover that you work at Orange Julius at the Logan Valley Mall, which I'd pretty much already guessed because the LVM was the only place handing out candy this evening, trying to promote a safe environment for children to enjoy some fun without wandering through traffic.  But honestly, Keelie, if I had taken my son to the mall tonight and saw you with your candy, I’d have gone straight to your supervisor with a print-out of your tweet.  Because you REALLY don’t deserve that job, even if it is just making orange smoothies.  YOU are ungrateful.

I don’t think that all people are ungrateful.  I do think it’s a growing trend though.  If you are unhappy about something in life, it’s easy to think that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence.  People are always complaining about their jobs or friends or family or injustices or politics (and I’m one of them!).  I think we all have to just take a step back from time to time and realize that our lives could be so much worse.  We could be broke, or homeless, or targeted for death because of our race or religious views.

While we are thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, we need to realize that a person is standing on the opposite side of OUR yard looking at our grass, and it’s very green compared to the dirt patch they live on.  You know, because THAT’S where the “dirtballs” live.  Right, Keelie?

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