Tag Archives: Harris Teeter

Rose-Colored Contacts

I’m more the type to yell at someone to get me another glass of water.

You do know the question to that answer, yeah, dudes. For those of you a bit slow on the uptake (no, not you. The other dude. Yeah, him. Right.) is “Are you a glass-half-full dude or a glass-half-empty dude?”

It’s a question that gets to the bottom of the nature of perception, how we see the world. Are we inherently optimistic, in seeing the glass as half full, or are we inherently pessimistic, in that we see the glass as half empty?

It’s the same glass, with the same amount of water. The way we perceive it, however, tells us a lot about ourselves. I made a little joke up there in the lead, but that’s not really the type of dude I am.

When I see a glass that’s not full, I see a half-empty glass and begin wondering who drank the other half and if the half that remains is poisoned. More pessimistic than I wish that I was.

Events bring out the pessimist in me. However, that’s not all I am.

When I face a question about a person, it’s a completely different person. It seems like I’m always thinking the best about people. If someone’s never done something before, I still believe they can do it. I’m an optimist about a person, a pessimist about people as a group. I feel like I sort of fall into the camp as outlined by the great sage and philosopher Agent K.

Had he ever existed, which he most assuredly did not, Agent K might have said, “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.”

So I’m not alone in this.

But, and here’s the big point here, I didn’t like being that way. I didn’t like always assuming the worst was about to happen.

So I decided to change. I decided that, instead of always looking for the hammer to drop, I’m going to compliment the person holding the hammer on her lovely nail polish. Instead of ranting about the litter on the side of the road, I’m going to think about how it’s less than it’s been in years past, then I’m going to pick up all I can carry and feel better about having made the world a (slightly) better place.

My mom had a number of favorite sayings she would repeat as often as possible. One of those was something she cribbed from a radio psychologist, Dr. Joy Brown: “You can’t change other people. The only person you can change is yourself.”

And, you know, they were right. I know that there are people who bug me just by breathing. I feel my blood pounding in my ears, my fists clenching all that. But that person’s not going to change. It’s who they are.

I have to decide that it won’t bother me. And it’s more than possible. It’s actually easy. It really is, dudes.

You can decide to be more positive and you’ll be more positive. You can decide to let the little things just slide off your back and they will.

Since I’ve decided to be more positive, to see a glass someone filled up halfway just for me, I find that I’m seeing more positive things happen. Not only that, but I’m feeling like I should be doing more little things to make the world a (slightly) better place.

Instead of getting irritated that someone left their grocery cart in the middle of a space instead of putting it away just two spaces over, I’m glad I came along so I can move that one and another that’s nearby because it will make some anonymous Harris Teeter worker’s day a little easier.

It’s all in how we choose to perceive the world and the people around us.

So what’s it going to be, dudes? Are you going to be positive or negative? It’s up to you.

I know you’re going to make the right decision.

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Serendipitous Shopping

So here’s the deal: It seems whenever I go shopping, or park in a big lot, I’m always next to someone either leaving at the same time, arriving at the same time or heading in when I’m headed out. That sort of thing. And I mean always.

Seriously, it’s getting a bit creepy.

I first noticed this  couple of months ago. In the huge Walmart parking lot, I walked over to my car, only to be blocked from getting in because the older, obese gentlemen getting into the driver’s seat of his backwards-parked car was blocking my way in. Annoying, but no big deal.

Then, I moved to the Harris Teeter parking lot. I pulled into an empty space that was right next to another empty space. In the time it took me to turn off the car and unbuckle the seat belt, another car had pulled into the space next to me. Again, blocking me from easy access to and, this time, from my car because the passenger next to me apparently had forgotten how to stand.

Once that locked into my brain, I found it happened all the time. I’m not kidding.

I’m getting a little freaked out by the whole thing.

There’s a huge parking lot, maybe a hundred cars and, yet, the only person in the lot at the same time as me is the person walking to the car right next to mine.

Is this some part of an Odyssey effect? (So named because I’d never noticed any Odysseys on the road until I purchased one of the mini vans, then I saw them everywhere) (Remember: Mini vans are cool! Tell people.) That is, now that I’ve noticed it, I’m seeking out instances of that and remembering it, conveniently forgetting those instances when it’s not the case?

Or is it, and this is my preferred explanation, because I’m special?

Or maybe it can be explained by simple mathematics (Hah! As if there is such a thing. [There’s not.]). Something along the lines of people arriving at the same time, possibly having the same average duration inside the stores and, therefore, leaving at around the same time? I don’t know, but that’s an appalling level of coincidence at work for that explanation. Not sure if I buy that.

Has this happened to any of you dudes? Am I the only one who finds himself accompanied by the only other person in the parking lot when I’m at my car? Tell me I’m not alone.

I’ll be waiting in comments for you.

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Gainful Employment

by Richard

In the category of news that could be good or bad, we’ve got the following entry: Sarcasmo is out of the house and into gainful employment.

Good because, hey, he’s out of the house and actually out there earning a salary, interacting with people and gaining valuable experience with being responsible. Bad because he’s doing that instead of being off at school learning to be irresponsible, but still earn good enough grades to look like he’s responsible.

Sarcasmo is back at home for a while so he can figure out what he wants to do with his future. Let’s just say that life at a university off on his own didn’t agree with him.

After all the emotion and stress I had with letting him go, I’m finding it’s even harder to have him come back home. In the short time he was gone, I found that I’d grown to like having only two young dudes to be responsible for on a daily basis. Now I’m back up to cooking for five every night.

Since we’re no longer legally obligated to have Sarcasmo under our roof (he’s over 18, you see), we’re having a hard time letting him just loaf around the house. So he got the message that he had to take some courses at the local community college and go out and get a job. We’re going to start collecting rent. Of course we are.

Make it too comfortable living here and I have the feeling we’ll see a permanent presence start grafting itself to Sarcasmo’s room.

With the economy as bad as it is, there’s people actually qualified for work who are having a hard time getting employed. Which makes Sarcasmo’s getting a job seem even better.

He’s off to grace the fresh-food section at a local Harris Teeter with his joyous presence. He went in on Monday to fill out the paperwork necessary to work. We’re still not sure if he’s going to be working with fruits and vegetables or deli or something along those lines, but that’s the section where he’ll be working.

I’m really looking forward to seeing how this works out. Sarcasmo’s not the most social person in the world, but this will necessitate him actually interacting with new and different people. Should actually be good for him. At least I hope so.

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