I've been wary of writing this blog, but I've decided to go ahead.
See what you all think.
Sometimes I'm catty, immature, silly and even mean.
And sometimes I enjoy being all of those things.
It's like being a teen girl on testosterone.
Anyways, Joe and I were going through the mall and I spotted a woman who was wearing clothes two sizes too small and twenty years too young. Her hair was two-toned and her jewellery garish like she bought it from the 'so you want to look like a whore' hour on the shopping network. She practically begged for comment, so I did. Just to Joe, of course, being heard by none other. We giggled as we then began editorializing on other people's manner, dress, hygiene. It was just plain fun.
To spend a few minutes being impolite was a bit freeing. Spending a lifetime trying to be understanding and kind is great but it's also wearing. I can't believe, I'm telling you this. But somehow I don't think I'm alone. I think it's probably hard wired into the psyche to comment on someone wearing turquoise who should be wearing black. I mean don't people have mirrors. It's make up not paint. As a fat guy, I upholster myself carefully. I don't want muffin tops over my pants and I don't want any part of me exposed without intent. Geez, get a grip, thongs look wrong on almost everyone.
Then I saw the ultimate guy. Flannel red pajama bottoms, beer gut hanging over, tank top way too tight. I made an unkind comment. Joe went, "Shhhhh...."
"No one can hear me," I said.
"He's got a disability," Joe said.
And I immediately stopped.
That interchange has bothered me ever since. I mean I wasn't joking about his disability, I was joking about his clothes. I wasn't more unkind with him than I'd been with "Flip Flop Mama" or the "King of Comb Over". But still I stopped.
Like his disability somehow exempted him from the kind of casual scrutiny of a stranger. Like he had to be treated as more fragile, more special than everyone else. Held to a different standard. And a lower one indeed.
It's weird but I feel now that my prejudice was shown more by stopping than it would have been if I had continued and treated him to my unkind wit like I'd treated everyone else.
Two questions for you. First, do you ever have catty outbursts like we did at the mall? Be honest. Second, would you have stopped too, if you discovered someone had a disability? Now one big one, is stopping the right thing to do?