Wednesday, August 29, 2012

No Country for Grumpy Customers

If you're a parent - or if you just care strongly about another person - sometimes you really want to fight their fights. And you can, actually, when the kids are little. It's a great thing.

If that kid, or person gets sick, then you can only fight by asking lots of questions, keeping up with medications, and doctor appointments, prayer - and of course trying to keep that person in good spirits.

The medical stuff will always need the parents and champions to help.

But there are other times when you can just listen to some horror story, helplessly. You want to jump up and yell at someone, especially the "someone" who caused your kid pain.
Making a Stand

And now, with the lovely vastness of the internet - I can attempt that.

Hey you. Yeah, you, the inconsiderate rude male customer of a certain ice cream stand in Dracut. I'm talking to YOU.

How dare you. How dare you put your energies into making a sweet young man, new at the job, feel like a nothing. 

How DARE you, attempt to embarrass and belittle someone just because they weren't spot on with the whole counting of the change thing. From what I understand, this young man personally did not wrong you, nor give you incorrect change. So why was it OK for you to give him a hard time about his math skills?

You should be the one to feel embarrassed, especially if you knew his story. Especially if you knew that he had to abandon his first job, being a paper carrier, because of severe illness. Especially if you know how well loved he was by all his customers.

If you knew what a bright, and extremely caring kind of person this young man is - you'd be ashamed. If you understood the depth of uncertainty and worry that has plagued him and his family for the last five years - if you had a damn CLUE - of what he's been through and fought back against, you'd feel rotten.

If you, Mr. Crappy Ice Cream Customer, had an inkling that this kid was actually admired and respected by many of his classmates, teachers, and hundreds of others that have heard him speak of behalf of the American Liver Foundation, maybe you'd ease up.

If you had any damn idea how much time out of school this guy had to endure because of illness, maybe you'd take it down a notch.

But it shouldn't matter that this worker in question has had some very rough patches, you have no flippin right to speak that way to ANYONE, no matter what their history.

But he was a teenager, an easy mark, eh?

So this message actually goes out to a few other sorry souls:

Hey you, Mr, Impatient Fast Food Manager - do you know not only do you embarrass your employees by your loud corrections, you embarrass yourself in front of your customers? It's true! There's been quite a few witnesses to your rudeness. Again, the victim was another young man, a 20something this time, but just young and insecure enough to feel the weight of your ill-timed and ill-chosen words. Easy marks, these poor kids.

We've all been on one side of that counter, sometimes on the other side - we all need to take some deep breaths and practice kindness.

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