Tag Archives: Diplomacy

On Dealing With Others

This is cliché, but I’m not a “people person.” That primarily has to deal with the misadventures of growing up the wrong way in a public school system. I’m sure of it. Regardless, being “outgoing” or “affable” aren’t my primary traits. Without you all being surprised, I had quite the tongue by the time I graduated high school. I was often hard to handle.

My family says I’ve mellowed out some since then, not much but some. It has taken several years to not instantly berate or rip apart anything that lightly smelled of an insult or slander. I still have my moments where I read things the completely wrong way and think “thanks, <expletive>, you can stick it up your <expletive> and do some jumping jacks.” I’m giving the benefit of the doubt to people more than before. It does help, because it has occurred to me that my wording is a lot more keen than many Americans. When I write or say something, chances are good it’s very deliberate and very sincere. That’s a deadly combination. Others seem to communicate as if they lost their brakes during rush hour.

My hair stylist explained to me this past Tuesday of my “no sass mode,” which apparently means there are times I just don’t take anything from anyone. I thought that was everyday, but apparently I get in a mode. She says she watches my statements and the harder they get the more she knows I’m having a bad day. She and I are friends on Facebook. So, she gets the pleasure of see my blistering comments on everything from politics to the hockey puck that couldn’t understand what “right of way” meant.

This may sound all tough and whatnot at first, but I’d change it if I could go back and do it all over. Far too many times have the lessons of the past scarred my actions of the future. That’s not to say there are events I want completely undone, rather just training to not automatically think the worst of someone and act upon it. History can repeat itself, but it’s better to work on making it not.

It affects my life in all sorts of ways, but my work needs me to approach the public in a different way. This isn’t just the general public; these are people who can’t help themselves. Often less educated and less trained than myself, many have no concept of manners or cooperation or civility. They take what they think is theirs, and feel free to mouth off in any way to get more. Sometimes it gets injurious, and that’s a big tripwire for me. I had one rather wonderful woman tell me “you’re afraid of me. ” What took the strength of a thousand men to keep in was “no, I’m not afraid of you. I’m afraid of losing my cool.”

There was an episode of Law & Order on a few nights ago I just happened to catch at the tail end. It dealt with bullying, and the criminal mastermind was seeking revenge upon his enemy. The police had him in the interrogation room wheedling a confession out of him by saying “the effects of long-term bullying last well into adulthood for the victims.” It’s the God’s honest truth. That stuff doesn’t go away for targets, even when the instigator has long since forgotten all about it. It can’t be wished or willed away, and all of the programming associated with it doesn’t simply dissolve. It take years, maybe even decades, to revise the mind to adjust well with the world around them.

I would like to stay positive about this, even in the face of permanent harm. It appears I have been given a better intellect than many of my contemporaries. Although I could have clocked a much higher IQ in school had I not been held hostage by a vicious community, what’s left is better than average. No matter how painful, I’m better a diplomat than a degenerate.

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Stepping on the Toes Stuck Out to Trip Me

Years before I knew of WordPress, I would write reviews of businesses to ease the  frustration of being in the fields. They weren’t intentionally humorous, like Chris Hinton’s “Funny, Outrageous Reviews – Unicorns & Skulls,” but I had been known to take pot shots at places. Whether they deserved it or not is debatable. When you’re a miserable thirty-something that lost your footing in a place much more comfortable than where you entered this world, you tend to be a little bitchy. It also could have been low blood sugar. It’s a toss up.

Unlike most endeavors in my life, I stuck with it for quite some time. I still write reviews every now and then, and fired off a handful tonight. It made me think of all the foul people who reside at such places. To be fair, there are some genuinely interesting people, but I remember the wretched ones more often.

As I said before, I had been known to take pot shots. It wasn’t all that often, but I’m a very deliberate person. If someone cannot decide whether or not I’m insulting them, they can safely give me the benefit of the doubt. I’m very direct about this sort of thing, as there’s often an identifiable reason for it. It could be they’re acting like an imbecile, or they’re being inconsiderate to me. What have you.

Since I know my land well, I knew having a picture of my face out there was lethal. For some reason, people take personal insult to a bad review of an establishment they love. It’s a very defensive place. They must think I hate their freedom. At any rate, I fired up MS Paint and drew a stellar avatar.

When you live in one particular spot for a number of decades, you tend to remember the history. So, when I note I don’t want to patron an establishment due to a murder taking place on its premises, it ruffles feathers. There have been several bars I’ve noted police presence and why I would prefer not to drink at them. I’ve also ripped apart restaurants for being embarrassingly mediocre. In my defense, I always gave suggestions to improve the maladies.

This leads me to recall the worst, yet most awesome, hate I received to date. I had logged on after a month’s absence to find a friend request. Not only was it someone who didn’t care for what I had to say about… whatever he was pissed off about, he had created a specific user account to read “Fuck Nate’s Reviews.” Apparently I didn’t pay enough attention to him, and he decided he wanted to be my friend.

Why bring this up at all? Because in hindsight that is hysterical. There are people out there in life who make it a priority to push you around. Why? Because they lack so much character they want to destroy the people that have it. There seems to be plenty of that around here, and people wonder why I act the way I do.

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