1) I am checking out at CVS. I went to grab a prescription from the pharmacy and grabbed a 12-pack of paper towels on my way out. Big black dude gets behind me in line, looks like a working father. "Oh! Are those on sale? I need paper towels." "Yup, twelve for $9.99, five bucks off." "Ah! Nice." He stays in line, however, as the line has quickly picked up shoppers the way a dry cloth picks up stray pieces of copper wire on a lab bench. I check out, rip open the shrink-wrap on my product, and hand him one the rolls. "Here! To get you started." "Oh! Damn! Damn! Thank you! Thank you Sir!" "You got it." "That was very kind! God bless you! Have a nice day!" "You too!"
2) Yesterday I took Midnight on my long run. It was the first time I was able to go that far with the dog. This is mostly a function of my continued obedience efforts with the dog; previously she was simply too distracted by other dogs, squirrels and bikers to make the journey; I had to separate my dog walking and running trips. Not yesterday; this was a huge milestone for me, one that I hope to recreate as often as I can. I went into "boy scout" mode and over-prepped for my trip ("burning man" mode?) and filled my Camelbak with ice water, a ham radio, sunblock, flashlight, a multi-tool, my vape (I quit smoking), chapstick, my wallet, keys, and who knows what else. On the way to the trail, about one half block away, the dog poops. And I have forgotten to bring a damn baggie. "Shit," I say to myself, then laugh at my word choice. I look around, and decide to use a fallen branch to relocate the poo from the sidewalk to the dirt, just so nobody steps on it or gets grossed out in the 2 minutes 30 seconds it will take me to grab a baggie from the trail entrance and come back for the poop. Ten seconds later, a bicyclist rides right up to me and says, "You know, I've always wondered who leaves dog poop around, I guess now we know who the asshole is." The sad part was, I was expecting this. The second it happened, I thought that some asshat could witness this and give me shit for it. I was zero percent surprised when it happened. "Wow. Thanks for assuming the worst in people, pal." "Yeah right, asshole. You come out with a dog with no bag in your pocket?" "There are bags right there. I'm going to get a bag right now." "Where?" "At the entrance to the trail." "I don't believe you! Why don't you have a bag?" "Because: I made a mistake." Like, seriously, I spent 35 minutes preparing to go out but I overlooked the items I normally always have. This was my first running trip with the dog and didn't think about that one aspect. And in the back of my mind I know there are baggies at the entrance to the trail. Annoyed, I decide it is time we introduce ourselves. I ask his name, and tell him my name. "I'll be seeing you around!" the dick says. I did not stoop to his level, I kept my language in check. De-escalation the name of the game.
Don’t be too quick to judge others.