Your Ad Here

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Kindness Begins With Me

I thought that it was interesting that in church today, they talked about being kind.
You see, I really never think about being kind, but it had actually crossed my mind a few days ago when I was in yet another airport, in New York, no less, and there just happens to be the unkindest people in:
1. Airports
2. New York.

I had had a fairly uneventful trip from Boston to NY, even though I was functioning on about 3 hours of sleep and had just traveled/driven the night before from Long Island, NY, from a gig----I know, duh, why didn't I just fly out from there, you ask? Well, I am not that good at planning, and I had visions of not being able to get to the airport from who knows where on Long Island at whatever 8th rate motel that I could afford.

So, back to the airport.

I decided to be nice that day. I decided to be kind to people. I decided to smile at people and react nicely, no matter what others did. It was an interesting exercise.

So, this is what happened.

I smiled at the crew as I got off the plane, and they smiled back. Well, they had to, its their job. So, we can't count that.

I walked down to the terminal and made a bee-line for the bathroom. Of course, I had to stand in line to wait, but I tried to catch peoples eyes and smile or nod encouragement to those with annoying children. No one really noticed me. Oh, well.

I moved on to the food stations to grab me some much needed nourishment before my next flight. I decided on Chinese food---the food in this terminal is actually really good, so I was having a cheap thrill, and was a bit excited to eat one thing good on this uber long trip.
I ordered my food and asked, nicely, for chopsticks. The girl didn't speak English very well, but she smiled back all the same and seemed happy that I wished her a great day. Unlike the girl behind me that clearly wasn't having a good day. She complained that they didn't make the line very exact and she didn't know which side to enter in... Whatever, I thought, as I agreed with her, but smiled all the same.

I got my food, checked my schedule and realized that I had to go to another terminal, so I had to get on a shuttle to get there. No worries, I thought, I still had a half hour before my flight boarded.

I walked down to the bottom of the ramp to catch the shuttle. There was a line, and a woman getting on the bus was yelling for her husband to come---that the bus was leaving. Of course, the guy was behind me, and had to run down the ramp and go through everyone---well, you can imagine the woman at the bottom that worked there---getting people on and off the shuttle. She was annoyed and made a comment about stupid people that put other people out, because they can't stay together. I just smiled at her and commiserated with her----I understood how it felt. I don't think that she noticed me.

So, as our shuttle bus pulled up, I walked by her and got onto the bus---she pointed out to us that we could use the back entrance, as no one seemed to be doing that. She was clearly still annoyed.

When I got onto the bus, I smiled at the driver, a young African American guy, and said "Hey! How's it going?" He smiled back and nodded---then drove us to the new terminal.

I felt rather good about my exchanges so far, but it all finally paid off, when I started to exit the bus. The driver smiled at me when I was getting off, and said, "Hey, I really like the colors you are wearing...nice..." I smiled and said "Thanks!"

Well, it pretty much made my day better. I had proved to myself that if I just CHOSE to be nice to people, they would eventually reiterate in....well...kind...

I'm sure that you are wondering if I kept it up the rest of the day. After all, it had still been before noon---well, depending on which time zone you were in. All I can say is that I ended up sitting next to a woman on the next flight--the five hour one---that thought that gum chewing was supposed to sound like some kind of wild animal eating. It was disgusting and no matter how much I made small groaning sounds or annoying "ohhhh", she didn't get the idea that she NEEDED TO SHUT HER MOUTH WHILE SHE CHEWED!

So, I have to admit that she threw me off for the day, and I was seriously happy when she fell asleep and looked like a total dork with her mouth open---snorting like a pig. I just wish that she would have sucked that gum back on one of those snorts and sort of choked.

Oh, oh...did I really say that?


Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life said...

Well, you had me laughing out loud and that RARELY happens when I read something. I too kind of wished that last woman would have choked on her gum. Is that wrong? Does that make us bad people? Well, we can always repent but not quite yet, huh?

Oh, and have a good day. Don't you just hate it when people say that?

The Bakers said...

HAHAHA! Wish she woulda choked. Hahah! Sorry, that was funny. You know, I have discovered this theory too. It works so well. I make special effort to say hi and notice that people that don't get noticed or recognized and I LOVE the way their face lights up when someone acknowledges them. Being in the Customer Service industry now, I HAVE to be friendly, but it pays off...literally.

Hailey said...

I'm kind, I'm just shy...

...and mean sometimes

Shawn said...

I'm getting ready to travel again tonight, and I am bound and determined to be pleasant---even though they tried to change my flight this morning and then took away the seat that I had originally asked for...

Whats up with that? So, I will be sure and let you all know what original people I encounter in...oh...what is it?....yes,....its Phoenix...

I shouldn't have too much trouble there.

Elly said...

Lol. You crack me up. Glad to hear your experiment worked. Mostly. :)

Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin