I have had a lovely day. Bike riding, brunching with KLW and Sara, and roofing with Jen! I saw this sign: “if you don’t like where you are, change it. You are not a tree.” I love unexpected life lessons from the sidewalk. I biked home and took a lovely soak. I was feeling very zen. Life *IS* good.
Then I was texted a story that horrified me. Someone I love dearly is being bullied by some miserable sh#t. She is struggling to overcome the darkest time of her life. And this guy decided to be a d#ck. What is wrong with people? Why could anyone think it’s alright to be a bully and pick on vulnerable people? I just have never understood how or why people are unkind… intentionally unkind.
There is that old chestnut ‘misery loves company.‘ Not me! When I’m miserable, I like to contain my negative energy in isolation. I don’t want to infect people with toxicity. I don’t like to be a gloom carrier.
I’m blessed with an upbeat nature. So, I lucked out on the happiness genetics. Still, I do get sad. I’m not a robot. I’m human. I’m an emotional person. My melancholy is not typical but I do get in a funk. When I am in the state of despair, it usually is a less than a 24-hour thing. My bounce back time is quick.
And I do get angry when people are seemingly taking pleasure in being mean. I’m not a yeller. And I am a pacifist in theory. Still, I have an active imagination. I don’t even know this bully but I can visualize exactly what I’d like to do.
I knocked twice on his trailer. There was no answer. I tried the doorknob. It wasn’t locked. So, I pushed open the door. Despite the bright sunlight outside, the narrow room was dim and dingy. It had a brown plaid sofa with wooden arms. There was a floor lamp missing its shade. A piece of cracked plexiglass balanced on two milk crates creating a makeshift coffee table. Cases of empty cans of PBR littered the room. Three cans still in their plastic six ring dangled off the couch.
At first, the guy didn’t notice me. He was too busy. He was smoking, drinking and scrolling. His laptop was perched precariously on one knee and his overfilled ashtray on the other knee. A cigarette was clenched between his teeth. He went to grab the next beer. I got there first.
I held the string of PBRs in one hand at my side. In the other, I held an IPad up to his face and said calmly but firmly, “Why did you write this?”
“What? Who? What the f—”
“It’s not a difficult question. Why did you send this cowardly message on Facebook?”
“I don’t have to tell you anything.”
“You are a pathetic bully. You hate your life and you blame others instead of taking responsibility for your miserable existence.”
“You don’t know me.”
“Sure, I do. Bullies aren’t special. Their extra ordinariness drives them to make people feel small so they can be powerful. You may be a wretched cuss but I feel sorry for you. Tomorrow, the next day, the next year, your entire future looks to be no different than today. And it won’t change unless you change.”
He sat silently stunned. The ashtray had spilled onto the couch. His cigarette threatened to ash on his computer.
I rigorously shook the PBR cans and tossed them towards the couch. I walked the two steps to the doorway. Without looking back, I uttered my last words, “You are not a f#cking tree.”
Right?! How satisfying would that scenario be played out? Oh well. Positive energy to all the sad people in the world. It gets better if you get better.
“In the end, only kindness matters.” – Jewel