Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Social Niceities

The problem with blogging is sometimes I write things that are often personal and potentially about people who have not given me their permission to write about them or their stories, it's a fine line I walk, and while up to this point, I kind of know who my audience have been (apart from that freaky guy who offered me his and his gun's help, which quickly taught me how to screen comments on my blog), as I see my numbers creeping up with many new visitors, I feel I need to be a bit cautious about privacy, not of me, but of you guys. If you see a story that could be about you I absolutely apologise and please don't be offended nor think that I'm trying to get a cheap laugh out of you. I'm not. I'm happy to take the micky out of my world (excluding The Husband who is very much off limits), but absolutely not yours. If I do use a situation that may be familiar to you, it's really about me trying to make a point or pass on a learning from experience. So in this vein the next story is very delicate and I have hidden it as much as I can so as not to make lightly of someones situation. But what I am wanting to pass on is a bit of a conclusion I reached during it...do you sometimes just say the right thing, even though it's not what you think, just so you say the right thing?

So school yard parent chatting, I start chatting to someone I haven't seen for a while who I heard was having some bad luck, I asked after the situation and was made very quickly aware that this situation had significantly worsened. Of course I apologised profusely and kept chatting but in a more informed manner. This person then went on to apologise to me for causing me embarrassment by putting me in that situation. "I'm so sorry for embarrassing you" I think was how they described it. Point was though, I wasn't embarrassed at all. I had no idea the situation was worse and was not embarrassed or uncomfortable when made aware it had, I just changed my tone more appropriately. However, what I did do was a social niceity. I pretended I WAS embarrassed, and let them blither on along about this while I looked appropriately mollified. And then again today I saw the same person and they said to me again "Look I'm so sorry for embarrassing you by telling you that xxx had happened, please don't be embarrassed". Once again, playing along I once again looked embarrassed and shameface for something I felt nothing like that for. To make this person feel better about their bad situation, my social niceity was to act in a way that I didn't feel but felt like they needed me to act.

Geez can you make sense of this, a story without the detail is kind of like toast without butter, lacks a punch.
Point is....sometimes you just got to do what you just got to do.

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