One week I’m in New York, the next week I’m in LA, after that, maybe Chicago, or even Philly. Point is, I travel a lot, working on videos and films for clients. And I’ve noticed something in the past few weeks- people are getting meaner.
Our country is going through something right now. We’re becoming more and more divided. No matter the color or your skin, or your religion, or your political party affiliation- people are, it seems, more tense and tightly wound than I’ve seen in a long, long time.
On one flight last week, I watched a flight attendant verbally spar with a customer, then physically assault him with his entertainment device, prior to takeoff. When he complained that she’d struck him, she said she ‘knew’ he’d say she was a racist. I don’t know how it started, I wasn’t there for that part. But she threatened to get him ejected from the flight. Then, she turned to me and tried to engage me in an argument, too. I didn’t accept her challenge, it seemed pointless.
After takeoff, she and I talked a little. I instigated it. I asked her about her day, what her favorite part of being a flight attendant was, etc. Just trying to humanize the situation. And it worked. By the end of the flight, she was calling me baby, and she made up with the man she was so rude to, as well. She admitted she’d been feeling extra tense since the police shootings in Dallas. I understood. We’re all wound up, lately.
But it’s weird, right?
It seems to me that when times get weird, that’s the time to treat other people even better than you usually would. Not worse. This is the time to make a point of not seeing people as “the other” but as part of us. Only then can we work together to make things better.
The world has too much anger and hate right now. Let’s not add to it.
Let’s be nice out there.