I’m really tired of the Mean People.
I recently volunteered for a local community event. Overall, this was a wonderful experience and I loved every minute of it. Except for the Mean People. But I was absolutely amazed but the lack of common courtesy that a small fraction of the participants showed…for not only for the other folks there but for the volunteers. And then the smaller fraction that was actively rude to anyone in their path.
Sadly, this is not uncommon. I’ve seen people at the grocery store who have actually raced to beat me to the open checkout line. I’ve worked with people who can only be right by proving you wrong…publicly. As a teenager, working at McDonald’s, I had a customer chew me out because he had to wait 30 seconds longer for his special order Big Mac. I’ve seen trainees reduced to tears because of a mean person just couldn’t wait patiently when the clerk encountered something new.
I’m especially cognizant of new employees, because let’s face it, we all had to start somewhere. It never fails, in almost every restaurant or store I go to, if someone is in training, I will be helped by that person. I’ve had some of them get all flustered by a simple question and I just tell them, “Relax.” But it’s almost as if the gods have decreed that my patience needs to be rewarded with every trainee within a 20-mile radius. And that’s cool, because I have been in the “new girl” shoes and I always appreciated someone who understood.
I do wonder about the Mean People. I try to make allowances because some folks seem like Mean People but really aren’t…I just happen to catch them on an off day. But for those dedicated to that lifestyle, what makes them mean? Did they have unhappy childhoods? Because I know people who have truly had unhappy – even awful – childhoods who are definitely not Mean People. Is it that they feel they aren’t getting their share of the world? If that’s the case, then go work for it, just like the rest of us have to. Is it just in their DNA? Well, just like stupid, I’m not sure you can fix mean.
I’m not sure what the answer is here. But to the Mean People, I say just stop. There are already too many bad things in the world to make a simple trip to McDonald’s unpleasant for you or that poor teenager behind the counter. And for those who refuse to stop, I stand by my statement: “Mean People Suck.”