Getting what you give?

People like to say that we get what we give and if we aren’t getting what we want from others it’s somehow due to us not giving enough or the right thing or whatever. I’m not so sure I agree with this logic, and I’ll tell you why.

Society nowadays is heavily populated with disgruntled, grumpy, rude-ass people who are just looking for an opportunity to play top dog. It’s true. I see it all the time, especially while out driving. Dealt with it earlier today even (back home now on break since an appointment canceled). Watched a guy in a brand-new SUV zoom around and cut folks off before coming to a stop and turning in front of them without even using his turn signal. Dumb rudeness that we all probably witness frequently. Doing that sort of stuff just because they can.

Was out walking some pups about an hour ago and passed a yard with a retired man out front pulling weeds. I know he’s retired because he’s been out there pulling weeds every day this week, and also I’ve met his wife on several occasions too (she’s actually a nice person). Well, you know how puppies are out on a walk. They’re going to potty when they need to go. I steer them away from trampling and tinkling on plants, but grass is another story. There’s a spot where a tree was recently excavated with saw dust all around that the pups especially attract toward, and I saw no reason to stop the boy pup from tinkling a little there (boys being prone to mark their territory, and this little guy being a tinkling machine while out on walks). And the old man yelled to me, asking if that was good for his grass. Probably not. I said sorry, we’re just out on a walk. If he didn’t want animals to pee in his yard, that’s all he really had to say and I’d be sure to either cross the street from then on or keep the pups tethered closely to me on the sidewalk until we got past. Simple really, no reason to make it a big issue. But then he comes over and starts demanding I tell him where I live, saying he’s gonna bring his dogs down to piss in my yard (not that that would bother me if I did happen to have a yard). He went on complaining, saying dogs should only use the bathroom in their own yards, but as I restated, we were on a walk. It happens. Especially for puppies. How can it be helped?

old_man_cat_getoffmylawnI always carry poo bags and scoop up any physical waste left by dogs I’m caring for, but this wasn’t about poo. Just tinkling, and in a yard that really didn’t look all that great to begin with, truth be told. The grass was patchy and missing in places, and like I said there was sawdust all over from that tree being removed. But whatever. All I’m saying is the situation could’ve been handled more civilly by him. I was polite in response, called him “sir” and tried to defuse his frustration by agreeing not to let them go in his yard anymore, but he just dismissively waved me away and went back to what he was doing. What a grump.

In the past, I’d always waved and said “hello” to that man and his wife. And I do aim to be careful to not let the pups scratch up grass or damage plants in people’s yards. But dogs will be dogs and sometimes they behave in ways we wish they wouldn’t. Just goes with the territory. The man’s a dog-owner himself, though his own usually stays cooped up in the backyard so far as I’ve been able to see. Not that I care, just sayin’. You’d think another dog-owner would comprehend how puppies can be and would just ask nicely that I do what I can to ensure they avoid his yard. Wouldn’t have been an issue then. I would’ve agreed and that would’ve been that.

It’s simple shit like that that annoys me about people on a daily basis. I go out around town and try to be nice to people I meet, say “thank you” and hold doors for folks and try to be conscientious. Then they just blow up and act rude and take it out on me or others because I guess they figure they can. And it happens frequently enough that I’ve gotten frustrated about it. Wish I wouldn’t since there isn’t much I can do about other people’s behavior. And, admittedly, sometimes I’m rude after having a bad day, so I try to be understanding about this sort of thing.

But when I ask my guyfriends how often people bark at them like that, they say they can’t remember the last time it happened to them. Huh. Happens to me fairly regularly over this, that and whatever. Now, why is that? And that’s when people start assuming it’s due to you getting what you give. But if you’re being polite and trying to be conscientious, how are you giving something that deserves to be repaid by arrogant snaps, rude comments, and doors let slammed on you? I don’t get that and am to the point of refusing to accept responsibility on that front as well. I try hard to be nice or at least helpful on some level or at least non-obstructive toward others, and it’s not repaid in kind. People just act however they want whenever they want, regardless of who you are or whether or not you deserve their attitude.

Just the way it goes.

Reminds me of a time a few years back when I was out walking some pups in an apartment complex in the newly-developed side of town about 10pm around this little lake. Some complete stranger walked up to me and asked which apartment I live in. I hesitated because it was dark out and I don’t know this guy, so I mumbled something about just being out walking the dogs. And he replied: “If you don’t live here, then you need to get your dogs and get off this property!” Really mean about it. I was shocked and stammered that the dogs do live there and I was just over to walk them. He muttered something and walked away, but that was really rude. We were being quiet, those dogs were very well-behaved, we were causing no problems at all. Just some rich bitch guy throwing his weight around, demanding that people like me exit the vicinity because we don’t belong there. But I was hired to be there, so he can kiss my ass. Never did mention that run-in to the owner since frankly it embarrassed me a bit back then. Kinda reminds you that you’re seen as an outsider by some folks just because. Why? I don’t know. Maybe because I wasn’t fancy-dressed, but I was dressed decently enough for being out caring for animals. Kinda shocking when strangers approach you with attitudes like that and just assume they can talk to you any which way, as if it’s within their right.

People irritate me.

Is it because I’m a short-statured woman so they think there’s no consequences to talking down to me the way there might be if they approach a man like that? I’ve always wondered. Because, like I said, most of my guyfriends rarely deal with that sort of thing. Then again, the ones who do receive grief from strangers sometimes have to deal with the Law being called out, which is worse. But the guys I know around here don’t commonly deal with stranger men barking at them like that. I don’t have enough contact with other women to know if they do or not. Just makes me wonder.

Ah well. Can’t let grumps get ya down. Why a retired man living in a beautiful home with a pretty fountain in a safe neighborhood with a nice wife and a bunch of grandkids who seem to visit often enough would be so mad at the world is beyond me. Goes to show that “success” doesn’t always bring people happiness. Some of the most materially well-off people I’ve ever met are more anal and angry than practically anybody else. That’s just my experience.

And now it’s time to head back out.

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