I’m currently sitting in an airport marveling at all of the people around me and what travel reveals about them, and of course, reflecting on what it reveals about myself. I get irritated and agitated when I’m super tired or hungry and have to watch what I say or do in those moments.
Others though seem to let their freak flag fly. Maybe the airport isn’t a great place to clip fingernails into your purse (I wonder if she’s saving them for her lunch later?), shove Kleenex up your nose and leave it there (my son thinks a tampon might work better) or yell into your cell phone and profess your horniness to your new lover (just eww.)
Why on earth do we do these things in a public place? Is it that we don’t care, or are we just that unaware of others around us? What do we want others to know about ourselves? And at what point do we realize that our behavior is making someone gag?
I grew up learning to say excuse me when I burped out loud, saying please and thank you when asking for something, and always minding what we called our “p’s” and “q’s” (an English expression for minding your manners, no clue what the p and q stand for to this day, but I understand having manners.)
You can say we live in different times now but I’m asking all of you in your day to day lives (not just when you travel) to start paying attention and ask yourself the following questions:
1. What effect do my words have on others? (Drop some of those swear words and smile or ask politely)
2. Am I on the defense? (Remember to breathe when this happens)
3. If I’m in a hard situation, how can I find win – win? (Um sir- yelling at the rental car people will not help you get an upgrade)
I for one would like a kinder, gentler world, like the exchange I just witnessed sitting here writing this – the sweet airport attendant offering her arm to the lady who needs extra help down the jetway, promising to get her to her seat. Seems simple enough right?
So be kind- pay attention- and please no tampons shoved up your noses in the airport.