Merriam-Webster defines a gentleman as “a man whose conduct conforms to a high standard of propriety or correct behaviour” and in the context and for the purpose of this post, I shall assume the same definition for a lady.
I knew of a woman (a neighbour actually) who was an animal lover and made it her cause to educate people of the need to be humane towards animals. However, when it came to children, she treated them worst then she would to her pets. One day, I saw her screaming her lungs out at a 6 year old child who made the mistake of riding his tricycle in front of her apartment. The child was scared stiff! The boy was the son of another neighbour of mine, so I came out from my apartment, gave the best reassuring smile I could give and in the gentlest tone I could muster, told him to go back to his parents. He rode off as I patted his head.
Said woman then complained to me that the noise from the child’s squeaking tricycle was making her pet toy poodle jumpy and she ended her diatribe by saying that she was right in deciding not to have children because they are noisy and dirty. In what to be the last exchange I had with her which ultimately led to my getting into her “naughty people’ list, I told her she was right because she was not HUMANE enough for children and that she really deserved her pet because she acted like an ANIMAL and if animals have thoughts, they would probably objected that I compared them to her.
If you think I have something against animal lovers, yes I do. I have problem with animal lovers that behave badly, mind you, not all of them.
This is just one of many examples of paradox in our supposedly cultured/civilized/humane society which incidentally I find to be overrated, where the level is concerned. There are some people who walk among us with twisted idea of what being cultured, civilized or humane is about.
According to Dictionary.com, these are the definitions for these words:
-adjective : enlightened; refined
1. having an advanced or humane culture, society, etc.
2. polite; well bred; refined
1. characterized by tenderness, compassion, and sympathy for people and animals, especially for the suffering or distressed.
All these qualities are missing from this group of people I am talking about.
A friend of mine recently recounted to me an incident involving him which left him bemused. He was driving his delivery van along a narrow road in the city one day when he drove past a blind man having difficulty navigating across the same road. He was hesitant for a few seconds on whether to stop and help as he observed the blind man from his rear view mirror. H noted that there was no traffic behind him, so he decided to do his civic duty. He stopped his van, ran back to where the blind was and helped him cross the road. No sooner as they made it across, he heard a honk and he turned around to see a Mercedes behind his van.
He walked quickly towards his van and as he passed the Mercedes, the very well dressed lady driver wound down the window and admonished him for being inconsiderate and wasting her precious time and he overheard her saying to her passenger, “The locals are like that one lah! Some of them can be rude and inconsiderate!” My friend bit his tongue and refrained from retaliating verbally because he was driving a company van but he is pretty sore about it to this day.
My friend was perhaps being inconsiderate for stopping his car. However, he was helping a blind man crossing the road! Did he deserve to be called inconsiderate?
What happened to my friend only helped convinced me that these ladies and gentlemen (refer to aforementioned definition), are just self centred, self absorbed and condescending barbarians on their self-righteous high horse. The annoying thing is, they are really convinced that they are prim and proper. Ah! That’s it. Prim and proper! They are stuffy and snobbish people.
I obviously have come across many of these prim and proper folks, enough that I would bother to blog about them. If I have to cite another incidence involving me, I would tell this story. I call it the attack of the Smellfungus (Merriam-Webster definition : an excessively fault finding person).
My colleague and I decided for a smoke break. As our building was a no smoking zone, we found a spot outside of the building. Being keenly aware of the no smoking campaign and the effect of secondary smoking and wanting to be considerate to non–smokers, we found a spot which did not have much human traffic and had enough wide berth for anyone who was walking past.
The spot that we chose had more than enough wide berth and there we were enjoying our break and our cigarettes. Then I saw a lady walking towards us, surely she could see we were smoking and she would avoid us. Anyway, it didn’t make sense for her to walk past us since the distance would be shorter if she chose the other direction from where she was coming from. For some moronic reason, she decided to take the longer journey and walked directly towards us. As she walked past us, she pinched her nose closed and waved the other hand in the air. What?! My colleague and I could only respond with an outburst of laughter as we found it amusing that she took the trouble to show her disdain for smokers when she could have just easily avoided us without any inconvenience to herself.
A gracious society my foot!
A gracious society my foot!