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All posts for the month March, 2012

Where Have All the Manners gone?

Published March 26, 2012 by mindfulofchatter

After a few run ins yesterday, and in daily life. I have to ask; Where have manners gone? The act of simply saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ seem to have vanished.

Yesterday, my friend and I were in my car, waiting for the light change. We were in the ‘go straight’ lane, the huge truck across from us was in the left turn lane. The light changed and the truck charged forward, cutting in front of us. He didn’t have the right of way. He didn’t wait his turn. His life was far more important than ours. Our puny little schedule, and lives, didn’t matter to him. What on earth was so important that he couldn’t wait 30 seconds for us to cross the intersection?

I live in a an apartment building with no assigned parking spaces. We all manage to share pretty well. We have a new neighbor with a club cab, 1/2 ton truck. She can’t park the darn thing in one spot. She parks diagonally across two spaces. This keeps others from parking next to her, and she can drive out easier (she backs in). The kid with the souped up car uses one space. The lady with the new mini van uses one space. But the gal with the truck? Nope. She’s special. It all about her.

I was taught to be polite. I taught my children to be polite. They are in their 20’s and they are STILL are polite. They don’t answer their cell phones in the middle of a conversation. They are polite to servers in restaurants. They park their cars in ONE parking spot and don’t block the doors of the car next to them. They have been known to help people carry things and hold doors for others.

But the rest of the world seems to have gone mad. It is against the law, where I live, to talk on a phone and drive. You have to use a hands free device. But people still think it’s okay to blab on the phone and drive. Every time I have almost been creamed, it has been by someone talking on the their frickin’ phone. It seems to be okay to cut someone off in line, be it on foot or in a car. It seems to be okay to roll your eyes and complain about the elderly person with a walker moving so slowly. Say ‘please’ or thank you’ to your server? Never! They are your servant while you are in the restaurant.

I call this the Queen of Hearts Syndrome – All Ways Are MY Ways! Everyone is so convinced they are more important than anybody else.

There is nothing, I repeat, NOTHING, in your world that is so important you can’t slow down for a few seconds. Wait your turn. Be polite to the elderly person who can’t move so fast any longer. One day, that is going to be you. Treat your servers with respect and politeness. You will be amazed at the service you get in return. Don’t interrupt your face to face conversation to answer your cell phone. If you must, say ‘Excuse me’, THEN answer your call. Don’t sit in a restaurant and talk loudly on your cell. Or in a store for that matter. No one wants to hear your half of the conversation. Just because your phone fits into your pocket, doesn’t mean it rules your life. Look up, engage in the real world.

Slow down a tad. Be polite to others. Let the guy with one or two items go ahead of you in supermarket, when you have a heaping cart full of goods. Park with respect to your neighbor. It really does pay forward. If we all do it every day, think how much we can change a little part of our world.

A Really Old Movie/Book Review

Published March 23, 2012 by mindfulofchatter

You know, sometimes you just have to get stuff out. Make it stop rolling around in your head so you can sleep. This is one of those things.

I just watched Interview With A Vampire for the second time. I had only seen the first time last year. I thought I’d watch it again because, well, just because. This movie is from 1996 and based upon the first book in the Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles. Anne, herself, wrote the screenplay for Interview. For those of you not familiar with the movie, it stars Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, with several other well-known players thrown in.

I read Interview With A Vampire decades ago. I am not sure how many books make up the series, but I made up to Body Thief before I had had enough of Miss Rices’s vampire set. Some series are like that for me, I simply get tired of the premise and lose interest. The Sword of Shannara is another one. Come on, man! End the series all ready! Enough is enough. Others kept me looking for the next one. Robert Parker was like that. I always looked forward to my meetings with Spenser, Hawk, Sunny Randall, Virgil Cole and Everette Hitch. I miss Robert Parker and all his characters.

But back to Interview With A Vampire with Louis and Lestat. The story begins with Louis giving an interview and telling a journalist his life story. His first hurdle is convincing the journalist he is, indeed, a vampire. I’d say a living, breathing vampire, but vampires are not really alive now, are they? From there, Louis tells us how, in something like 1579, he was mourning the loss of his wife and child, and seeking death for himself so he would no longer hurt. At this point in his life, in steps Lestat, who offers him ‘a choice’. To die now, or live forever. Louis wants to die. He has said so, over and over. And yet, he chooses eternal life. WTF??!??!!

Thus begins our journey listening to Louis – whine. 200 years worth of whining. No wonder Lestat is a nutter. He has spent 200 years listening to Louis whine about everything! Louis doesn’t want to kill humans, Louis still mourns his old life, Louis feels empty and alone. After escaping Lestat, Louis goes in search of other immortals. After years of searching, he finds them. Then he kills them. How much self loathing can you take in 2 hours/400 pages?

This is the series that seems to have launched the vampire phenomenon. Interview with a Vampire was published in 1973 or so. The first movie came to us in 1996. Now we have a supernatural revival of sorts. Twilight, Being Human, The Rachel Morgan series, The Parasol Protectorate series and many more all deal with vampires, werewolves and other supernatural beings.

I can not see the attraction of being immortal. Us humans seem to have a difficult enough time dealing with our 80 or so years. How could we ever manage 200? Even our dear nutcase, Lestat had trouble adapting to a modern world. The last we see of Lestat, he is driving a car and pulling his 18th century lace cuffs out from under a leather jacket.

And Louis? Got sit in the sun and shut up!