Anita's Haven

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WHAT BUGS YOU? – by Elizabeth H.N.

on 13/07/2015

So pleased to have a new guest here today, sharing what annoys her most in life today. Elizabeth Horton-Newton, author, family woman, social activist and multitasker is here to blow off some steam.

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What Bugs You

By Elizabeth Horton Newton

The question of what bugs me started me thinking. I thought it would be easy to come up with a pithy response. Imagine my amazement when I could not think of a single thing. Not one to give up easily I thought harder. I set my standards lower. Suddenly my brain was overrun with annoyances. People who cut me off in traffic, people who take the last cookie in the jar, people who don’t offer their seat on a bus to the elderly or disabled, drivers who are not disabled parking in handicapped parking spots, people who allow their children to run wild in malls and stores… I could go on. Yet, these seem such minor irritations. In fact, they are minor. I turned back to the drawing board.

I reexamined my list and found every entry had something in common. At their root they were all instances of rudeness based on self absorption. It seems to me in recent years people have become so self-involved they cease to consider what effect their actions may have on others. It’s a new type of selfishness, practiced on a regular basis right there in front of everyone.

I can’t say precisely when the shift came; if it was sudden or if it happened gradually over time, unnoticed even by those affected. Did it begin with adults behaving badly, teaching their children by example? Or was it children who first ran amuck, somehow undisciplined or unable to be disciplined?

Perhaps this self concern was always present beneath the surface, concealed by society’s morés. At some point it was no longer rude for people to put their desires first. Please note I did not say they put their needs first. That would be understandable to a degree. I’m talking about the crowds at Filene’s bridal dress sale known as the Running of the Brides in Boston. True, Filene’s has gone bankrupt, but while it was still in business it created a mad rush every November. Women who were not even engaged would trample one another in an effort to acquire a designer wedding dress at a ridiculously low price.

Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving in the US, is now known for injuries and deaths resulting from people fighting to get the sale item they must have to make Christmas complete. After all, they promised their child Santa would bring the ridiculously expensive toy for them to open on Christmas morning. By January the toy may lay forgotten on a playroom floor. People have been trampled, severely injured, even killed by aggressive shoppers who have no concern for others. The goal is to get the best while paying the least at any physical expense. There is a website that tallies the deaths since 2006.

You may wonder if this qualifies as simply being rude. It is perhaps the most extreme example of self gratification resulting in the most horrifying examples of rudeness. No thought is given to others in the drive to acquire some material object. Humanity goes by the wayside and instead homicidal consumerism takes over.

So, the next time you cut someone off on the highway, jump in front of another person in the grocery line, the next time you take the last Danish at a company breakfast or an extra cookie “for later”, give your actions a second thought. Did you hold the elevator door for someone hurrying to get on or did you pretend you didn’t hear as he asked you to wait? Did you look away on the subway as an older man or woman struggled to stand, hoping someone else would give up his seat? Did you park in a handicapped spot thinking you would only be a moment in the store? Do you want your child to emulate your behavior? Are you doing other selfish things unconsciously as your child looks on? Are you perpetuating rudeness with your behavior?

What bugs me? Rude, thoughtless behavior by people who are so self-absorbed they can’t see beyond their own desires and comfort. Does it bug you?

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Thank you, Lizzie! I can’t say I disagree with you;)!

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2 responses to “WHAT BUGS YOU? – by Elizabeth H.N.

  1. Lizzi Newton says:

    Reblogged this on Between the Beats and commented:
    This was my response to the question posed by Anita, “What Bugs You?” Please check out the other responses on her blog. You might want to ask yourself the same question. What bugs YOU?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. bjtiernan says:

    You captured this predominant behavior beautifully. It is not a noble quality and one that needs to be looked at. Thank your for reminding us.

    Liked by 2 people

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