This is the last post in this series as we move into December, I hope you guys have enjoyed reading about it all damn day! (rip.) Like I said, next month will be much more stable, much more insightful, and I will be talking about some really personal stuff. For more info, follow my Twitter + Facebook. Link is at the bottom of the post. I love you guys.
In the 52nd episode of HIMYM, Ted brings a new girl that he is dating to the group and they point out that she has a big flaw. That she talks A LOT. This shatters the illusion for Ted and then in turn he brings up a big flaw that Lily has, which is chewing loudly. By the end of the episode the group begins arguing about each of their flaws, Ted being the guy who corrects everyone else, Barney having a handful of flaws, not paying attention, using an annoying high voice, using catch phrases. Robin over-using the word literally, and Marshall, perhaps the most important part of the episode, being that sings nonsense. The parts of this episode that weren’t about the flaws were padded with the news that Marshall’s results from the bar exam were in and he lost his password, so he didn’t know whether or not he would actually be a lawyer. By the end, Robin brings up a nonsense phrase that Marshall sang for hours that got stuck in everyone’s heads. It is revealed that the phrase was the password and Marshall logs on to find out that he passed the exam and was a lawyer in New York City.
This episode and this blog post fell at what I think would be the correct time. I personally spend a lot of time taking into account the flaws of those around me. Someone is too arrogant, too selfish, they make everything about money, they interrupt my sleeping because they want to talk about something useless, they make their hair and nails a priority over everything else in their lives, I could go on, but this is about self reflection. Not about pointing out the speck of dust in everyone else.
There are a couple things I could talk about here, which will pull this blog post a bit longer than usual, I hope you’ll bear with me.
First, I have a friend who has a great heart. Although he is still pretty immature, he means well. When things are good, he is great, when they are bad, he will be there for you. He stands by his word and I really respect that, but he has a knack for going a bit too far with jokes and comments at times. We could be having a normal conversation and he will spit out some joke about something irrelevant that he tries to loophole through to the conversation and nine times out of ten, it’s just offensive. We could be playing a practical joke on a friend and when most of us are finished, he amps the joke up and continues setting traps or over-doing it in some other way. It’s frustrating, to be sure, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a good person. I think that at times, he just takes things farther than they need to go and that is something that he needs to work on.
Second, myself. The other day at the restaurant I was speaking with one of my coworkers about a man at a table she had. This man was much older, and was a drunk. He was saying some inappropriate things about her to her face and it frustrated her, as it should. I had dealt with the same man a few times before and it resulted in me no longer serving him alcohol at any place where I work. It is something that I don’t believe I can do on the grounds that as a bartender, I need to stop people from over-drinking. The man comes into the restaurant plastered drunk as it is, I just don’t think he needs any more.
Still, that is overshadowed by my history with him. I have gotten in this man’s face on two occasions. Both of them involved women coworkers and his lewd comments involving them. I was passing by their table the first time, delivering drinks to another table of mine and he said something about taking the pants off of a friend of mine. And he went into further detail which I will not repeat here.
I turned around and called him on the things he was saying and let him know that he wasn’t welcome in the restaurant if he continued to say those things. After some prodding from another guest at the table, he apologized to me and was told to apologize to my friend at work. The second time I saw him was in a similar setting. I was setting a drink down at their table and he made a crude joke about bedding another girl who I have worked with for years, and asked me how easy she was. Along with a handful of other things that again, I won’t repeat here. I had heard enough. The man was obviously drunk, his face flushed and his words were slurred to an extreme level. I then told him, much more forcefully than I had intended, that if he said anything like that again and I heard him, I would personally take him out to the parking lot and make him eat those words. Not my greatest moment, sure. I could have handled the situation with much more class. A few days after that I told him when he came in and tried to enter my bar and make his own drinks that he was no longer allowed to drink at any place that I work. I would no longer serve him alcohol anywhere in town.
These moments bring us to the other day, this man had said things to a coworker, she handled it appropriately, and I told her some stories about the situation between him and me. She then got all kinds of flustered about something and told me…
“I know how to do my job.”
That didn’t make a lot of sense to me, I wasn’t undermining her position or anything of the sort, but in a way it shed some light on myself. There have been times when I don’t think about the words out of my mouth and I find myself making crude or off color jokes, not understanding how they will sound. I have said many inappropriate things and I realized that day that I don’t get an excuse. I am not allowed to pretend to police others in that scenario if I am not policing myself. I must always hold who I am accountable for the things that I do and the things that I say I don’t approve of.
Granted, I don’t say things with the intention of making friends or strangers uncomfortable, and I will do my best to never make a crude and disrespectful joke. Still, sometimes I slip and that is something we all have to learn how to accept. We are not perfect, we should always remember that we exist as masterpieces in the making and sometimes it takes time to iron out all of the small bumps in our personalities.
I awoke the morning that I wrote this after my apartment had been decorated for Christmas and I was feeling extra holiday cheer, early in the morning after having gone to bed much sooner than I would have liked and I exited my bedroom to find one of my roommates sitting on the couch. I could tell when I walked in that he was frustrated, and I knew why. A practical joke was played on him that went too far. I thought about that, and about how we all have our flaws, but still love one another despite them.
With that sentiment I stepped outside for a cigarette and felt the cold wind whipping at my cheeks, blowing the first snow of the season into my little home town. I remembered something then that I often tell myself.
Allow time to grow. You are not a magic stalk that will grow overnight. There will be times you fail, there will be flaws you hold, and there will be times in which you need more water than you do sunlight.
Sometimes, I think we should recite that to ourselves and remember, we are all flawed. So let’s take the moments we do things right and use them to be water to someone else.