In memory of an email buddy and morality of us all

7 Aug

Many of us have email buddies, with whom we exchange jokes & interesting emails, and we may have never met them in person.  It’s funny how enjoyable such a superficial relationship can be, or how much richer we become as a person by that exchange.  Today, I received an email from the son of one of my “email buddies,” and it contained the news that my friend had passed away in June.

It reminds me how very important it is to appreciate each and every interaction I have with everyone.  Our lives intersect only briefly in many cases, but even that brief intersection can actually be profoundly important.  Once, someone told me that I should smile at each and every person I met during the day, no matter how grumpy, bad smelling, or unpleasant they might be, for that smile might be the only thing anyone gave them all day.

The smallest act of kindness might be of profound importance to someone you see today (or tomorrow…or any day.)  On the flip side, that careless inconsiderate act could have devastating effects on someone too.  Do we really need to find our pleasure in someone else’s pain?

I don’t care how unattractive someone is, how poor they are, or how bad they smell, but do they really deserve to be the source of ridicule from the rest of us?  I’ve seen the emails circulating about the people of walmart, for example.  Okay, I’ll admit…I’ve gone to the store dressed in some outlandish outfits and looking totally ridiculous on occasion.  I’ve gone to the store, covered in paint and “popcorn” accoustic ceiling parts too, to buy drinks & lunch.  I’ve seen some people at the store that have made me go “WTF” to myself too.  But, at the same time, that inner voice questions the moral integrity of finding humor in the photos of unattractive & badly dressed people.  What right do I have to do such a thing?  How would I feel if my photo was included in one of those line ups? 

What kind of pompous asses are we to think we have the god given right to make fun of other people and act as appearance police?  What does it really say about our state of enlightenment?

Oh don’t get me wrong, I’m not elevating myself above such things, and I have to admit, the person I saw at Walmart in Mobile the other day had me laughing and scratching my head as we tried to decide if the black shirt & turquoise hot pants belonged to a male or female.  I’m guilty too.

How can we rise above such base natures as what we have?


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