Joe was getting his hair cut. Our barbershop (oops, salon) is tucked away in the corner of a huge department store near us, so I went shopping. I picked up a couple of things and then came back to wait for Joe. We both have the same barber, who was working alone in the shop, so I pulled in the entrance way beside the counter. We were all chatting and laughing. In a flurry of energy a woman arrived, announcing that she had a noon appointment and demanding to know where the 'stylist' was who she had an appointment with. Our barber said that she'd be in momentarily.
With a frustrated flourish the woman threw herself on one of the chairs. She stated that she didn't have time, that's she's too busy to even wash her hair, that the stylist should be respectful of the needs of customers. It was five minutes to noon. Then after loudly complaining about waiting, she announced that she was going to go and return some nylons in the store and she'd be back. The stylist had better be there or there's be 'hell to pay.'
After she left, the spirit lightened for a moment - like a malevolent spirit had been exorcised, and our barber said, "Wow, it makes you wonder if people ever think about the impression that they are making on others." I said, trying to be nice, "Well, she did seem stressed out about time."
Instantly our barber responded, "What, and being patient and understanding takes time?"
That statement has stayed with me ever since he said it.
I realize that I sometimes blame time for the choices I make, the way I react, the shortness of my temper. I don't know a single person, not one, who doesn't constantly say that they are wildly busy. And not just during the holiday, year round. So, in effect, if one is rushed every day, then it isn't 'busy' it's 'normal'. Perhaps we've all, societally, come up with an excuse that is convenient to explain away the loss of manners and the increase in selfishness. Perhaps our 'i' products - phones, pads, pods - are well named. It's all about what 'i' need, what 'i' want, what 'i' expect. If I am the only important person in the room, then what the hell do I care about what U think (sorry, I don't have time to type out 'you' lol). And besides, U is twelve letters down the line, and 'i' is frustrated at having to wait for the eight in front.
So, I'm going to be careful with time.
Kindness and patience.
I want that to be the 'new normal'.