Pet Peeve #20: Being Disrespected After Cutting People A Break

You would think that the natural reaction (not even asking for a spiritual reaction here) of people who have been cut a break would be to return the favor or at least show some respect or appreciation. But too often that is not the case. How often have you sat in your car and graciously allowed someone to cross the street . . . only to see them take an agonizingly slow stroll as if their sole intent in life is to exasperate you.

Or isn’t it often the case that after you let someone with just a few purchases bump ahead of you in the grocery line that they end up holding you up for an extra five minutes while they haggle about some supposed five cent discount? You would love to just gift them the nickel… but that would only set them off. That illustrates the rule that no good deed goes unpunished.

Then again, I remember the time in the Hallmark store where I was buying Karen a Vera Bradley bag for her birthday (thoughtful spouse that I am). Just after the cashier had rung it up and I had paid with my VISA, the nice lady standing behind Julie and me in line offered me her 20% off coupon. Of course, by the time the cashier figured out how to negate the first sale and apply the discount to the second, the dear woman was probably cursing her kind offer and both Julie and I were thoroughly embarrassed at having wasted her time. (But not so embarrassed that we didn’t want the discount!)

Of course we all have had the distinct privilege of receiving the infamous Italian salute after we thought we had graciously backed away from a chicken fight over a disputed parking slot to allow the other person the privilege of saving a few steps. There is nothing quite like parking space battles to raise the blood pressure. It’s especially heartwarming to experience such love during the hectic Christmas season when spaces are always at a premium. If looks could kill… we all would be dead many times over.

But don’t be discouraged – keep on cutting others that break – maybe they’ll surprise you… then again, patience is a good thing!

Credit for this idea goes to Allen Shock