My friend and I were eating brunch this past Sunday at a restaurant on Mass Street in Lawrence, KS. The weather was close to 70°F — a first for the year — so we sat outside. The tables were tiny and very close together. That's ok, it's part of the charm of Mass Street.
A man sits down at the table next to us and proceeds to have a very loud, detailed, lengthy phone conversation. I've seen this happen in movies, but this was an in-person first. We got to hear about someone maybe named Carol, and how she's pretty, even though she's overweight. And about how he's very excited that he gets to move back to Lawrence after 34 years, can you imagine? And about how at church, the most amazing, coincidence happened.
After about five minutes of this, we were thinking, how can this man be so oblivious to his volume, to his rudeness? By this time, I was frustrated, and about to get pissy. I could barely hear my friend's voice over this man's!
I didn't want to be super rude, but I needed him to know how inconsiderate his behavior was. So I turned in my chair to face him directly and made eye contact. He smiled and looked away, and kept talking. I maintained eye contact and smiled slightly. He smiled and looked away again. But he got the message and finished the call.
When he put the phone away, I said thank you, smiled, and turned back to face my lunch. The man apologized and tried to engage us in conversation, to which I replied the minimum number of words I could without being snotty. When we finished, I said to the man, "good luck to you, sir."
What could have been a really ugly situation was avoided, and all parties walked away unscathed.
Remember, we're not judged on what goes on in our heads (thank heavens), but by our words and our actions. Try to make yours count in the plus column.
Thanks for reading. Good juju to you!