The other day, I was stuck in traffic, and it occurred to me: I am not the boss in many of my roles I have in life.
Take my part in traffic. There was a man who was directing traffic, and he was the boss. Others in traffic did not realize it, but I certainly did. There was construction around an intersection, and he was directing us through the intersection. Okay, this is not news or a revelation.
But I saw a man make an obscene gesture towards the man, you know, give him the one-fingered salute. The flagman's reaction? He smiled, and flipped his sign over, from "Slow" to "Stop." He kept the man at the intersection far longer than was customary. And thinking back, I sort of applauded the lesson the finger-flipping man was given.
When I go to the doctor's office, I am very kind to the medical receptionist. I used to be kind just because I thought the job may be thankless, but that's when I had not really observed the medical office. Now I see that she really guides traffic, making sure patients have their vitals checked, their insurance in order, and their children controlled. And she, more than anyone else, determines when you get ushered to the exam room. In the medical room, I am certainly not the boss.
Not only does the medical receptionist tell me when I can go to the room, but once I am there, I am at the mercy of the doctor. I can't ring a button or change a tipping situation in order to command better service. I am at her mercy. And then she gets to decide whether to give me a shot (well, that argument probably works better in the pediatric world), give me a pap smear, or hit me with the rubber hammer. Yeah, me out of control.
I go to the airport, and I am definitely not the boss. The luggage has more rights than I do. Everyone with a TSA jacket and badge can pretty much do what the hell they want with me.
TSA Agent: "Touch your nose with your left index finger."
Dumb Ass Leesa: "How is that a security request."
TSA Agent (talking into radio): "We have a code orange in Terminal B. Bring the cattle prod."
Okay, it is not that bad. But they get to determine what is three ounces or five ounces, if as stick pin is some sort of dangerous weapon, and who to delay when they wave their phallic wand in your direction. Me, certainly not in charge.
I suppose that's why, when I am grocery shopping, I sprint to the "Self Check-out Line." I love being in charge of that machine. I love that I don't put my bread and canned items in the same bag, and I love that no one smirks when I say, "plastic." I re-use the damn bags all of the time. Stupid environmentalist baggers.
Indifference is the Opposite of Love
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