Pierce Brosnan once said, that “Humiliation is poisonous. It is one of the deepest pains of being human.” While that may be true, I have come to realize that there are times I think people should get a little dose of humiliation … I’d go so far as to say it might even be healthy! Lately I’ve been thinking about how so many people in so many places have a complete “False Sense of Security.” They feel like they can: do anything, say anything, or act any way, and no one else will notice or care. Well let me tell you – I’ve noticed – and you should care! Not sure where I’m going with this? Follow along, you’ll get there.
Cars: For some insane reason, I’ve discovered that when people are driving they have this disillusioned sense that no one else can see them. I have come to believe this because if they DID know that others could see them, I doubt they’d be doing what it is I see them do! In recent weeks, I have seen adults pick their noses, pick their teeth and pick their hair. I have seen them sing like rockstars, talk to themselves, argue with their phones and with their co-passengers. I’ve seen them eat like pigs, scratch like monkeys and twitch like rabbits at red lights. And all this time I want to roll down my window and ask, “You do know your windows work both ways right? You can look out and we can look in?“
Parks: Another great venue for watching people be some version of much-too-human-for-public-viewing. My mom and I were at the park with my daughter recently, and as she took her on the swings, I realized that parks are a lot more like zoos, but where people become the animals. “Don’t feed the animals,” I thought to myself, as a little boy walked by with dried out cheerios stuck to the back of his shirt. “Don’t climb on the bars,” was another appropriate zoo rule for the two-year-old who looked pleadingly at me swinging from a six-foot-off-the-ground rung he was stranded on with NO parent in sight. “Remember these are wild animals,” also resonated in my mind as a string of kids decided to have a wood chip fight. Where the heaven are you parents!?!
Crowds: Just because there are a lot of people, doesn’t mean you can’t be seen! Whether in the city or suburbs, you get an overcrowded area and individuals behave like they’ve stolen Harry Potter’s cloak of invisibility. It’s rather gross actually, I’m not going to lie. Some of my favorite (or least favorite) moments I’ve witnessed in a crowd. 1. Owners getting too friendly with their pets. I love my dog too but there are boundaries people! 2. PDA: hand-holding, a kiss here or there – nice … having to explain your PG13 behavior to my PG kids – not so nice. 3. Clothing choices. Yup. You know the whole “no shoes, no shirt, no service” thing? Well, we need to add “no pants,” to the list. Just eww. 4. If you’re at a fair, calories still count. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should, and if you have to … wear something loose fitting. 5. Respect personal space! Just because you bought too much and are carrying a crate-full, doesn’t mean we need to be bumped off the sidewalk to satisfy your retail therapy.
Church: Being in one doesn’t mean all acts are holy. Threatening your children to keep them quiet, for instance, might not rank as high on God’s list as you think it does. Texting, emailing, or online shopping definitely doesn’t qualify and YES, I’ve seen all three! Nodding off, regardless of the “peace” you feel, probably isn’t totally appropriate. Snapping gum, bickering with your partner or picking your ears … bad, worse, disgusting. Making a mad-dash in or out also doesn’t really bolster your cred. Finally, regardless of your hearing status, try to keep your personal conversations on the down-low.
Yards: Your fences are only about four feet tall, and we walkers and runners CAN and DO witness what goes on in your yard. Wear clothing, for heaven’s sake. Something! Pick up the debris of your lifestyle (although I do enjoy watching you trip over your trash from time to time). Get control over your lawn, or it will eat you like the Venus Fly Trap you’re letting it become. If you’re having a party, don’t forget that Science has proven that sound does-in-fact travel!
There are countless other examples of places where people need a little bit more humility in my opinion, movie theaters, grocery stores, restaurants and public sporting events, just to name a few! Because our false sense of security is becoming somewhat epidemic. I once read that the reason babies love the peek-a-boo game is because they truly believe the person who closes their eyes disappears and reappears when their eyes are uncovered! Well, I hate to break it to you people, but just because you’re not looking, doesn’t mean other people have disappeared off the scene! Be aware. Think about your actions. And don’t feel too guilty laughing at those who don’t, because honestly … I’m laughing too.