Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Keeping My Ham Trap Shut

I am trying this new thing where when someone says something that I disagree with, or think is stupid, or am totally offended by, I shut my mouth and keep it tight until the urge to speak passes.  This has not always been something I’ve been good at, nor something I’ve particularly put into practice much.

Don't say it.

The good news is that I have less guilt over my thoughtless riffing.  It’s not nice to talk back to anyone, including family members, the elderly, other people’s children, the checkout guy at Walmart who visibly rolled his eyes and groaned when he saw me coming with my overflowing cart and a dozen reusable shopping bags.  In cases where children are involved, an urge to say what’s on my mind might actually do some psychological damage or have legal repercussions, and who needs that noise?

The bad news is that my head might explode.  This is hard, people.

The other bad news is while life might be nicer on the outside, I’m seeing what’s really going on inside.  It’s tough.  As the times a day that I am silent when my real instinct is to bite back add up, I realize that that I have a real problem with judging.  Thinking that I am above all the things other people do that irritate me is wrong.  Truth is, I’m just as capable of being irritating, and in so many different and creative ways.  Probably even in some ways no one else has ever been irritating.

And you know what?  People are nice to me.  Tolerant at worst.  Which makes me feel even more like the Capital B Judgment Police and firms my resolve to try even harder to change my mind and heart about being judgy.  It’s sobering that so many others are so much better than I am at keeping their judgments to themselves.  I must have the worst manners ever.

So try me.  Say something annoying, or stupid, or offensive.  I need the practice.  I can’t promise I won’t snap back, but I will do my very best to keep quiet.  In addition, I will try not to judge you for your ineptitude.

How am I doing so far?



  1. How about:

    "You cheat at Hearts."


    "Elvis is alive."


    "I'm a vegetarian."

    Those always seem to qualify. At least in my family!

  2. Ha ha ha!! I managed to slip up this weekend with a hearty "SHUT UP!!!" But it was directed at my husband, who kind of deserved it. :)