A lazy Saturday afternoon and I am slouching on the sofa, watching an English movie, which I so wanted to watch for all this time. My eyes glued to the TV, sometimes, my eyeballs drift down too, to read the subtitles appearing for a few seconds on the monitor. I don’t want to miss out on any word!
My phone rings, I check the name of the caller from the corner of my eye for a fraction of a second! Its my friend Niharika (obviously, name changed!) calling. Huff! I don’t want to annoy her, so I answer the phone.
“Hi dear!”, my usual way of greeting my friends. An equally warm response from the other side.
“How are you”?” I said.
After getting a suitable reply, I quickly added “even I am good, You know there’s this wonderful movie on HBO which I am watching…” and, there comes the next question “what is it about?”
The length of movie I’ve missed is dangerously increasing. I close my eyes in disgust. Did I not tell her I wanted to watch this movie?? She went on “ who are the actors?” I tried saying it one more time – “ you know I had been waiting to watch it so…..” She did not get the hint even now. She kind of wanted me to give her a live commentary of the movie!
I decided to say it straight now “Actually, I really want to watch this movie. I’ll call you in the evening.” I imagined her frowned face, but her voice was uncreased as she said “bye” to me.
I wondered that those subtle ways of saying things have got lost somewhere out of this universe (probably through the black hole!). The ways people interact with each other has become so much loud , so much “in your face”.
If you are on a walking track of a park, and have the graciousness to give way to a lady (if you are man and reading this) or to a restless youngster, chances are your gesture wouldn’t be recognized at all, and for all you know, the next moment that person would be walking just in the middle of the path, as if marking his/her territorial rights on it!
If a lady happens to stand next to a ladies seat, occupied by a man, in a Metro or bus, and she chooses not to ask for the seat, chances are her presence will be ignored, and she won’t get it till she insists that she should get the seat.
You go to a CGHS/ Govt doctor and tell your problem in a sentence, chances are the Doctor would be finished with her prescription even before you finished your sentence! Unless, you tell her that you are neck deep in pain, she would not consider you as a serious patient!
Have you ever tried politely refusing to accept the product or services offered by a salesperson or a telecaller? I tried it, rather I do that mostly, that is being polite to them (as they have to bear the wrath of many). So the telecaller girl, immediately shot back to me and said “WHY you don’t want it?” with extra emphasis on WHY. I was outraged and had to shout back and tell her that it was none of her business. Huff! subtlety doesn’t work even here!
Subtlety in the actions of people is dying down. When a thing is said politely, softly and in a civilized manner, it is considered as weakness. Till the time, you don’t show your vocal power and you don’t use your imagination to exaggerate things (in case you are a patient), others don’t seem to take you seriously.
This is another side effect of our fast paced and competitive life that we no longer listen, we no longer feel, we no longer try to see other’s point of view or others’ problem. Engrossed in our winning, earning, achieving ways, we forget to live and love the subtle way.
Don't you feel so... that being polite is taken as weakness..... being a soft spoken person means you would be huddled aside with someone more aggressive and more vocal... have you felt like that? Write to me.... I value your words.
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