Healthy Halloween… A Sweet Alternative

Healthy Halloween… A Sweet Alternative

Well, it’s finally happened. This year I became “that guy” for Halloween. No, not “That Guy” that guy, but the one that looks at all those little people dressed up in what I consider to be essentially a collection of multiple dimension origins of alternative Oliver Twist outfits, and thinks, “You’ve had enough.” Sure, I might be stretching a bit with that, but the fact of the matter is that all these kids dress up for the sole purpose of begging for candy. Not that Oliver ever begged for candy, but he is the one person most people reenact when begging, or attempting to beg by saying, “Please sir, may I…” well, you know the rest.

With the sugar overload that is Halloween, this year I found myself thinking, “I should get some apples or oranges for those little high fructose corn syrup addicts, instead of candy.” Then I remembered what I did when I was a kid when someone tried that crap with me. First, I would wait for two or three additional sets of trick-or-treaters to go through the “knock of disappointment” as we would call it. Then I would hurl my newly acquired orange at the distributor’s front door and run like hell.

What? When you’re ten and jacked up on sweets it seems like a perfectly good idea at the time. So oranges and apples are officially off the trick-or-treat menu. Also, in the event that you do receive a piece of fruit and take it home, parents never let you eat it because of that stories about razorblades being stuck in fruit on Halloween. So, even though you try to do a good thing and pass out something healthy, it gets tossed into the trash by the parents once they get home.

Instead I opted to go with something else… something in a sealed container. Something so heinous in the minds of most youth that then word got out my house would be dubbed some adolescent term that carries the same meaning and emotional abrasion as the black plague. Hey, if there is one thing I know about little kids it’s their complete and utter lack of being overly dramatic about any and every given situation. I figure if I could get the word out early on then none of the other kids would stop by and our house. We would be skipped out of respect to the commercialized and candy filled holiday Halloween had become in mainstream society.

Raisins, I got those cute little boxes of raisins to pass out. Hey, it might have taken me five months to get to them, but once all of the candy from, Halloween, Christmas, and Valentine’s day had been consumed and all that was left were those three boxes of raisins, they too were eaten as a last resort… which means after I my siblings and I had eaten all the sugared cereal in the house as well. But they were eaten, and I remember thinking that they really weren’t that bad… as a last resort.

So did I pass out raisins for Halloween this year and become the person received an evening of disappointed signs from the Oliver Twist wannabes when they noticed me handing them a box of raisins? No, but only because my sweetie-baby-cutie-pie-wifey-pooh took me to the movies to avoid being home for trick-or-treaters. Yeah, so instead of ‘that guy’ I was that other ‘that guy’, which is still completely different from “That Guy!” who usually hangs out at bars making comments about, well, you know.

Still, I did have little boxes of humiliated grapes ready to go. It’s funny, it only took me about thirty years to figure out what was going though the mind of that ‘crazy’ lady that gave me my first box of raisins when I was trick-or-treating all those years ago. I get it now, and if I’m home for the holiday next year I’ll probably be passing them out. I’m ok being ‘that guy’ and they will be new boxes, because now, for the next few months I have a two bags of baby sized boxes of raisin to take to work with me as part of my lunch. So, at least I’ve got that going for me.

What are your thoughts on a healthy Halloween?

Image Sources:
Google Images, keywords: Oliver Twist, throwing oranges, box of raisins, and sack lunch.

Happy Halloween… Can I get a Witness!

Happy Halloween… Can I get a Witness!

To begin let me start with a heartfelt “HAPPY BIRTHDAY!” to all the pagans out there. Hey if the Christians can pretend that December 25th is the birthday of that Jesus chap, then I feel perfectly comfortable redistributing the meaning of this whole Halloween holiday as the official birthday of Paganism.

With that being said, let’s all step into the WABAC Machine and go way back to the time when a young lad in Wyoming experienced some actually diversity in a town of 1500 people. It happened on a dark and chilly night on the 31st of October in 1982. I was eight, and probably a vampire. Of course this was back when vampires were still cool in a creepy kind of way, instead of the trendy bastardized shells of misunderstood models brooding and pouting in an attempt to get sympathy and instill crushes from thirteen year old girls and soccer moms. And I don’t care if you point out that you could see the strings when the vampire would change into a bad and flying around on strings, they were better damn it!

So there I was standing next to my brother on the doorstep of a rather plain looking home that was 100% devoid of any holiday decorations. I placed the plastic glow in the dark vampire teeth that would that would only glow for about 30 seconds after holding them up to a light for about a minute, in my mouth, you know, so I could get into character before giving the people behind the door my, “Sshick or ssseeeat” plea for more candy (those teeth always made it hard to talk clearly.) Once the teeth were in, I nodded at Mike and we knocked on the door.

As the door opened, Mike and I yelled in unison, “Trick or trea…”

“We don’t believe in Halloween,” interrupts the lady who opened the door.

This had never happened to us before. I figured she was kidding. So I said treat or treat again.

“We don’t celebrate holidays,” she said.


“The bible tells us not to,” adding, “goodbye.”

Nothing harshes and eight year olds unbridled sugar buzz quite like a stranger refusing to give you candy on Hallowing because the bible told them not to. It made no sense, and to be honest, it pissed me off a little. I even hung around for the next set of kids to come to her door, just to make sure what just happened really happened… it did. Poor things were just as baffled as I was. Still, hanging with the new batch of kids allowed us to compare notes on who passed out the best candy in the neighborhoods we had not yet hit. Soon we parted ways and Mike and I were in route to the big payoff houses a few blocks down, forgetting completely about the anti-Halloween house… until the following year.

The same damn thing happened. Then the following year, it happened all over again. It’s amazing how easily you forget which are the ‘no candy’ homes once the trick-or-treating actually begins. I made a mental note to skip the house a day or two before Halloween, but on the night of there I was on their step with an open sack holding all my candy, and an open mouth full of disbelief that the people in front of me didn’t believe in Halloween. I do remember that with each passing year the patience of the person answering the door grew shorter and shorter.

Over the years I learned that the family were Jehovah’s Witnesses, and that they were actually telling me the truth when they said they didn’t believe in celebrating holidays. For years my friends and I thought they were just cheap, and lied about not believing so they didn’t have to buy candy for other peoples kids. I don’t know why their deity is so hell bent against on having people celebrate holidays, but that’s deities for you… getting upset for no reason whatsoever and always, and I mean ALWAYS, trying to take the blast out of blasphemy.

There always was one rather depressing experience that happened from knocking on their door. It was seeing the children stuck in that house, sitting in the front room looking in amazement at kids their own age all dressed up, pretending to be something other than what they were, laughing, and asking strangers for candy every time the door would open.

Halloween was always my favorite holiday as a kid. I think it usually is for most kids because it is full of the one thing they have ample amounts of, imagination. The only thing I can figure is that the kids had been very naughty and the parents were trying to teach them a lesson. I wonder if the parents ever, after they closed the door, told their kids, “I know it might look like those kids were having fun being with their friends, unsupervised, running around asking for free candy and getting it, but the joke is on them! They aren’t having any fun at all.”

Maybe it was some cruel and unusual anti-imagination activity, like taking them kids to the Disney Land parking lot to collect bugs for a science project and telling them, “Just imagine there is no Disney Land beyond that fence. Instead imagine an empty field with beige flowers and nothing else, not even the bugs you are trying to collect. So there is no reason to even look in that direction. Oh and just ignore all that joy and laughter you ear coming from behind that fence.” Perhaps breaking down and hindering a child’s imagination is part of their religious agenda. Honestly, I have no idea. Although, I imagine if you get rid of the imagination early on, you don’t get questions like, “What does this all mean?” or “Do I really believe what you are telling me?” or “What does happy mean?” You know, things like that.

The other thing I never understood is why the parents would leave all their lights on. It was the equivalent of a child in wolves clothing… oh wait… I mean in reverse. When you leave your lights on, on Halloween, it gives every kid, and adults with kids, an inviting green light. It tells them that you are home and waiting around with no other purpose than to open your door to pass out handfuls of sugary goodness to anyone that knocks. Leaving all of your lights on and then answering your door just to tell the person knocking that you do not believe in the holiday and sending them away treatless, well, that’s just mean. I mean at the very least you could put up a sign! And that’s exactly what happened. Granted it only took seven years to figure it out (perhaps it was due to a lack of imagination?), but it did the trick. I mean sure, we still walked up to the door, but left in peace once we finished reading their anti-holiday proclamation.

I do have to say one thing though, saying you don’t believe in a holiday and then partially participating in that holiday by answering your door just to tell the costume clad person who knocked, and who is celebrating the holiday that you do not believe that holiday… well that’s kind of like going camping and then smearing honey all over your face and then telling the bear that has just showed up for an afternoon smorgasbord that you don’t believe in them. Whether you believe in it or not, it’s still there and still very real.

Although, I get people choosing not to participate in celebrating a holiday. Holidays are created all the time that I choose not to participate in… That’s right! I’m talking to you Hallmark! Quit it! Besides, I’m not sure a holiday goes away just because you choose not to believe in it. If that were the case Halloween would have disappeared a long, long time ago when the Catholic Church was avidly working on expunging all the Pagans, their beliefs, and their holidays.

In the end, I suppose that as long as these people are well and their anti-holiday belief isn’t hurting anyone then by all means, continue not to believe. To help with this whole thing I’ve devised a plan… so to any Witnesses reading this let me be the first to wish you a “Happy No Holiday At All Day!” I hope it treats you well.

Any anti-Halloween stories of your own you’d like to share? Please do.

Image Sources:
Google Images, keywords: Happy Halloween, glow in the dark fangs, trick or treat, Jehovah’s Witnesses, imagination, house lights, and happy non party.

New Research Reveals, Dolphins Prefer Nonsmokers

New Research Reveals, Dolphins Prefer Nonsmokers

Now for the record I need to start off by saying that this research is not based in any type of scientific research I’ve come across, or made up for that matter. In fact not a single dolphin was questioned in the gathering of this research, and by research I mean the short conversation I heard while I was standing in line outside a sushi restaurant in Maui.

The sushi restaurant was in our things to do in Maui book. The place had half price appetizers, sushi rolls, and sake after 10 PM, and karaoke! I have many fond memories of karaoke, not so much me singing, but me enjoying the singing and usually attempted singing of others. This was no different; the best performance of the night was, hands down, an old gray-haired Hawaiian with a cane. He was a largish sized man who chose to sing a song by Smokey Robinson and nailed it. It was amazing that a man that size for hit notes that high. And no, the Smokey-like Hawaiian was not part of the research, but definitely deserves some recognition.

The research happened about 9:50 PM, while standing in line waiting for the doors to open. We were the fifth group in line and shortly after getting there a red convertible pulled up and three youngish kids, i.e. barely old enough to legally drink, got out and got in line behind us (two boys and one girl). I don’t think they were bad people, I just think they had a different set of priorities than my sweetie-baby-cutie-pie-wifey-pooh and I have. As we attempted to talk about our favorite parts of the day and share our excitement about going snorkeling that following morning, this threesome talked in the vibrato of children who are trying to whisper, but haven’t figured out it involves lowering the volume of your speaking voice. Also, their favorite way to begin almost every sentence was with the phrase, “Oh my god.”

Actual example:
Girl to Boy 1: “Oh my god, you look so good in that new shirt.”
Boy 1 to Girl: “Oh my god, really?”
Girl to Boy 1: “Really.”
Boy 1 to Girl: “Oh my god, thanks.”

Boy 1 then announced to everyone in line, while only making eye contact with his friends, that he needed a smoke. So he walked over to his little red convertible (no, sadly it was not a Corvette), opened the trunk, dug through a backpack and pulled out a pack of cigarettes. As he stood next to the trunk of his car and smoked the girl yelled to him, “Oh my god you look so skinny standing next to your car.”

To which he replied, “Oh my god, really?”

Which caused Angela whisper to me, “Why do they have to talk like that?”
“Oh my god, what do you mean?” I whispered back to her.

She hit me.

“Oh my god, ouch!” I said, smiling at her. (It was officially on at that point.)

Now I did not see Boy 1 drop his cigarette on the ground and get back. This was probably due to my threats and taunts of tickles directed toward Angela as she attempted to hit me again. What disrupted this playful exchange was the lady standing in front of. Seconds after Boy 1 got back in line, she walked past us and up to Boy 1, saying, “I just love your car, could I talk to you for a minute?” And she pulled him over to the back of his car for a quick chat.

I’m not sure if it was the acoustics of the parking lot being just so that the conversation carried perfectly to where we were standing, or if it was the fact that she too did not understand the volume differences between a whisper and a normal talking voice, but this is what she said, “Hi, I’m a marine biologist on this island and I know that 95% of all littered cigarettes butts end up in the ocean and are responsible for making dolphins and other life very sick. You need to pick up your cigarette butt and put it in the trash. Thank you so much.” And then back to her place in line without even a “please” or “thank you”.

Boy 1 stood there for a second, looking like he was processing what just happened to him. Then without a word, bent over picked up his cigarette butt, walked it over to the trash can and disposed of it properly. As he walked up to his friends he said, in the quietest his voice had used since we they got there, “I totally understand where she’s coming from.” Then promptly changed the subject.

Angela turned to me with her large eyes full of joy and amazement. “That is the best thing I have seen all day,” adding, “I love that lady!”

A few minutes later we were inside ordering an excessive amount of sushi and giggling at the cigarette incident and then at the tone deaf couple trying to sing some Johnny Cash song and failing at every note.

So what’s the lesson? I guess it’s… well, I mean people are going to smoke if they want to, even if everyone agrees (even smokers) it’s an unhealthy and disgusting addiction. No, I think the point is, throw your cigarette butts in the trash. Because every time you drop a cigarette butt on the ground, a baby dolphin bursts into flames… too much? Ok fine, every time you drop a cigarette butt on the ground, a dolphin has a chance of becoming addicted too. And you can get into a lot of trouble trying to feed Nicorette to dolphins… ahem, I mean, so I’ve heard (whistles innocently). Seriously, if you smoke don’t litter. Actually, just don’t litter period. The dolphins say thanks (yes, for not littering AND for all the fish).

Any no-littering stories you’d care to share?

Image Sources:
Google Images, keywords: dolphins, standing in line, oh my god, cigarette litter, sick dolphin and litter free planet.

The Plane Ride from Hell… thanks kids.

The Plane Ride from Hell… thanks kids.

My sweetie-baby-cutie-pie-wifey-pooh and I have a system for packing for trips. This system is fairly common practice for people that have attended, are attending, or may attend the ‘Last Minute School of Preparation’. Although for the record, we did not pack last minute for our Hawaii trip… we packed three minutes prior to last minute. I always look at last minute as, well, just that. The fact that Angela and I got to take a two hour nap before driving to the airport I feel shows you our proficiency at packing just before the last minute.

There are a few things that acting, or in our case packing, last minute enables you to experience. Here are a few of my personal favorites:

  • The a fore mentioned two hour nap. I’m a fan of naps, and even though I will most likely be sleeping on the plane to whatever destination a waits, starting a flight with a nap that is just long enough to leave me sleepy is a nice preparatory event before I begin my on plane nap.

  • No double-checking your luggage before leaving. It means that I will always have the Goonies adventure quality about my trip. Because I don’t have time to double-check my bags there is no telling if I remembered everything and it isn’t until I’m in the middle of a hotel room in a new city, country, planet, etc. were I discover if I am going to need to get creative about doing my hair because I forgot a brush, or that I need to get out into my new environment to experience my new surroundings and find a store that sells what I forgot. (I only used a plastic fork to comb my hair for the first day. When Angela caught me using it, she made us go to a store to buy a small cheap brush for the trip.)
  • The giggles. In my experience it is inevitable that, at some point in the late night hours when I am tired and wanting to go to sleep but am still packing, I hit that loopy stage where everything is so much funnier than it would have been had I actually gotten some sleep. I’ve never felt bad about an uncontrollable giggle fit and packing three minutes to ‘last minute’ is always good for at least one of those… sometimes more.

The flight to Hawaii was in two parts. The first flight went to Phoenix Arizona. I slept through the whole thing. I attempted the nodding off routine of falling asleep in an upright sitting position, but when my head dropped down for the first nod it didn’t come back up until an hour later when the captain announced that we had begun our decent to Phoenix. It was grand. The flight from Phoenix to Maui on the other hand was a flyway to hell (feel free to sing that in your best AC/DC voice).

You know that feeling when you get an ice cream cone filled with two scoops of your favorite flavors and just as you step out of the store, even before you have taken a single lick, your hands fumble and you watch in Hollywood slow motion as your treat of creamy goodness falls to the ground to become completely inedible crushing your dreams that there is anything good in this world? Yeah, well I had that exact same feeling when I walked onto the airplane and saw two of the three seats in front of me being occupied by little kids. The mother sitting in the middle seat separating the two children is what gave me a false sense of hope that maybe it wasn’t going to be ‘that bad’. Damn you ‘false sense of hope’ and your deceitful ways.

The sperm donor, I mean father, was in the chair across the aisle. Actually scratch that, he was a donor because during the six plus hours on the flight I saw him do zero in regards to being a father. In fact I would give him negative points because at only one point during the flight did he remove his headphones and stopped watching movies on his iPad. It was during this iPad break that his wife actually told him, “I need some help. I am asking you to help me.” His response to this was to put his head phones back on and ignore her and the kids with even more vigor than he had done before.

The little boy was by far the more horrid of the two evils, er kids, mainly because he would not shut the hell up. Seriously, for the entire flight he did not stop talking once. And the extent of the mother’s parental ability was to remain sitting in her seat and say “shhhhh” repeatedly and then ignore the kids. At one point the little monster had to go to the toilet. He did this by announcing to the entire plane that he had to poop. Then, because there was a line to get to the toilet, he spent five minutes waiting for his turn standing in the aisle announcing that he needed to poop. He even informed the mother at one point that he was just going to poop in the aisle. The mother had the insight to hold on to his hand while they waited in line after his started to undo his belt after the pooping in the aisle comment.

You know, I miss the days when parents would beat their children. Not with the excitable vigor of Rocky Balboa taking on the USSR, but a nice heartfelt smack on the rump when the kids were being little shi… fecal matters. I mean I know it’s the parents fault, but perhaps if the parents had been beaten as children then they would have not grown up to be such worthless parents themselves. Besides, let’s say a kid throws a fit on a plane and is making the plane ride a horrific experience for everyone on the plane, I think that spanking the child in front of all of those people would be a nice way to publically apologize to everyone on that plane for your failure as a parent and your child’s lack of behavior. I know I’d appreciate seeing the little bastard getting a quick smack on the butt. I’d probably even say thank you.

Now even though I’m a reverend I’m not the type of person to bless people. However, if I thought it would do any good I would bless this family with infertility, sterility, barrenness, and unfruitfulness … and a lifetime of failures in the adoption department. I mean sure let them have a long full life and die of natural causes, but family lines go extinct all the time; I just happen to be of the opinion that this family is one that deserves be part of the family line extinction.

However, there was one positive thing that happened from all of this, the sheer nirvana I felt getting off of that plane and away from that family. Sometimes it’s the little things you have to take with you and that one lasted the entire time I was in Maui. Hell, it even got me through the two and a half hour delay and entire plane ride home.

What are your thoughts on the topic of bad kids and worse parents?

Image Sources:
Google Images, keywords: last minute, unpacking suitcase, bad kids on plane, depressed, bad parents, and happy day.

The Grass is Always Greener

The Grass is Always Greener

I’ve heard this saying for years, and at times I myself have said it to others. As a philosophy, it makes absolutely no sense. I think that if people feel that way about their life it is a result of their own poor choices, which is solely their fault and then need to own that and move past it. If they try to compare their grass to someone else, then that is clearly one of the key problems they suffer from and need to work on.

Today though, I am referring to this saying in a very literal… archaic translation, but literal all the same. Instead of literal, let’s go with a loose translation. I’ll get to that literal portion in a minute. The thing is, I hate yard work, and by hate I mean hate hate. Much in the same way Attila the Hun hated people telling him to use a napkin and utensils when he would eat. Yard work has always been that daunting task that loomed overhead when the weekend rolled around. This included things like weeding, trimming trees, planting flowers, edging, and the always tedious mowing of the lawn.

I don’t mind the outdoors, and I’m always fascinated by the raw beauty of nature. It’s just as a participant there in I usually try my best to stay clear of direct sunlight when I’m experiencing nature due to a skin condition. I believe the Latin’s call it sunburnus alloverus easilus. The invention of SPF enriched goo’s and creams have helped legions of people with the same skin condition exist and interact more in naturesque shade-free areas. I mean what did we have before that? Coconut oil, and all that did was make you smell really good when you would get sun cooked while wearing it, causing those less evolved and nostril motivated to want to eat you.

I know that for some, yard work is the cat’s meow, the marshmallow in your rice crispy treat, or the Bailey’s in your White Russian. It’s like seeing a bear in its natural habitat… a Studebaker. (I watched the Muppet Show recently and have been wanted to use that line ever since.) I for one am very grateful for people like that. Mainly because it allows me to hire someone to do something they love, so that I can avoid doing something I hate. It’s a rather brilliant exchange, one of which I have just started to partake in after all these years of begrudgingly working in the yard. It’s clear my yard knows how I feel about caring for it. It’s clear to everyone on my block, because it’s burned, withered, and tarnished. So believe me when I tell you that in my neighborhood the grass really is quite literally greener on the other side of the fence.

Now some people might consider yard work one of those must dos when they become a home owner. It might even be one of those relationship expectations, commonly expected to be completed bi-weekly by the more masculine in the relationship. Well if that’s the case, I say put a bow in my hair and call me Ethel. Fortunately my cutie-baby-sweetie-pie and I share the intense abrasion toward working on, in, or around our yard. So with our new yard guy it’s amazing how joyous we have become by simply giving that task to someone else who is happy to do it.

It removes any grumbling about mowing the lawn, or “I did it last week, it’s your turn this week” or any pointless petty conversations that can arise because we both feel the same way about yard work. Some might grumble about the cost, but seriously $60 a month for not only peace of mind, but the joy that comes with the knowledge that you don’t have to do it is more than worth it. Besides, the 2+ hours it would take me to work on the lawn is now 2+ hours I can spend working on my book(s), or even writing a weekend Smirk for others to read and get a giggle or two from.

If you hate yard work as much as I do, hire it out, trust me on this. You will be amazed at the joy it can bring into your life, and you’ll thank you, the person you hire will thank you, your partner will thank you, and your lawn will thank you, which is a lot of thanks for a relatively simple and effective solution.

What are you feelings about yard work?

Image Sources:
Google Images, key words: grass is greener, tan lines, Fozzy in Studebaker, and jumping for joy.

Judging… It’s just a little thing we do.

Judging… It’s just a little thing we do.

So I went to a free outdoor concert last week, which I high expectations for, but instead it turned out to be mostly obnoxious, with just a hint of tedious, and a splash of hope that all of the rude, inconsiderate, pushy kids would catch a nonfatal, yet very itchy, rash around their neither regions, which would last for a good week and a half. Typically I consider myself of the “kindness towards your fellow man” disposition. In times of arguments and grumbling I’m usually the first to start the, “can’t we all just get along?” chant of togetherness. Unfortunately though, as wave upon wave of rude people invaded my space, i.e. stepping walking through the middle of us all sitting in a blanket on a grass filled area away from the sidewalks, I admit that I did begin to lose that perspective in a hurry. It was the utter lack of mutual respect that emitted off those people like the pungent odor off an overpriced wedge of foul tasting soft French cheese, that I had the biggest problem with.

Yes I am being judgmental, but that’s the point really. Plus, I’m perfectly fine with it. Judging is one of those words that carry with it a lot of negatively charged emotional attachment. I think this is because of its use in religious text. The context is that is usually given is that judging is a bad thing that we should not take part in. I believe there was also a subtle suggestion in the text regarding this action… something about if you judge someone they’ll judge you back. Then a little while later in the book you have all these laws being shared that do, in fact, give you guidelines for judging people, and how they should be dealt with after said judgment takes place. It’s a bit confusing really.

Judge not… rubbish, I say judge, because I really do think it is part of the human condition. I know it sounds odd, but I think judging others shows you’re human. The problem is, is that people think and have been led to believe that judging others suggests negative insinuations, or unpleasantries about their character, which it certainly can, but does it always? Can you judge someone without attaching a negative perspective to it? I think you can, because I do it all the time. I’ve seen people that I thought could benefit from seeing a therapist. From that I could either mean that I think they are a crazy person, or that they could benefit and create a better life for themselves if they were to get some professional help. Both are judgments, one could be classified as a bit negative and the other is concern and not what I consider to me negative at all.

I figure the first thing we need to do when talking about this word is to define it so we know in what context the word is being used. There is the context of making a judgment due to one’s professional possession as in being a judge. Also, you may be required to judge someone’s guilt if you are assigned to a jury at some point in life. Those professional definitions aside, judging someone simply seems to mean forming an opinion about someone’s character based on one’s personal perspective, as in what think about them based on your observations. Yes, first impressions can be wrong, but first impressions are a social system for judging others. Job interviews are another socially acceptable scenario for judging others. As long as it is called something else, people seem to be fine with it.

Can judgments be wrong? Of course, that’s the great thing about the mind, thoughts, beliefs, impressions, etc. we can change them with the more information we get. We’re very clever that way. I’ve met some people that I didn’t much care for at first and whom I’ve grown to love and appreciate. The exact opposite can also be said.

Not too long ago I as this one kid get all huffy and bent out of shape because of a look they got from someone the store. They were so worked up that they confronted this person and the first thing out of their mouth was, “Don’t judge me!” I started laughing… I always start laughing when I hear that phrase. Telling people not to judge automatically gets them judging because of the judgment performed on them by the person who thinks they are judging. Also, by telling someone not to judge means you are, in fact, judging them. It’s a perfect working example of hypocrisy, commonly very loud angst filled hypocrisy, but there’s no telling them that, usually… unless they are family… or a good friend… or that one obnoxious guy that doesn’t drink, but acts drunk all night in a poorly chosen attempt to fit in and needs this explained to them in a very direct way because subtle hints are completely lost on them.

I’d really like to see all the animosity toward the word to go away. There’s really no point. People seem fine and always happy to take part in the action when they call it something else. One of the most common and favored practices of judging others is “people watching”. People love to watch other people, and form opinions about them. The one thing you can count on when you go people watching is that others are watching and judging you as well. It really is quite an even handed practice. Perhaps that’s why people seem to enjoy it so much.

I suppose the point is, it’s what we choose to do with the judgment. Some people choose to throw stones, others let it go. Some judgments make us laugh at others. Some make us laugh at ourselves. My gripe with judging others comes from people who take that judgment and intentionally belittle the person they are judging. Things designed to attack another’s self-worth and self-appreciation. I’m fine if people laugh at someone in shorts wearing black socks pulled up to the knee while wearing white sneakers, I’m fine with them telling others about it. The part I disagree with is when people go out of their way to make a bunch of noise to get the attention of the black sock person so when they look over and see others intentionally pointing and laughing at them for the sole purpose of hurting their feelings.

To sum it up in a sentence, judge all you want, just don’t be a douche bag about it.

What are your thoughts about judging others?

Image Sources:
Google Images, key words: judging, soap box, don’t judge, and laughing at others.