Dear President Trump,
I slept in a little this morning so when I went for my run there were more people out than usual. In order to avoid crossing busy streets I took an unaccustomed route that included some narrow sidewalk passages. I was heading down toward one of those narrow spots when a man was running up toward it. I stepped aside so he could pass since it’s harder to get your momentum back when going up hill. I’d like to be able to say that the positive to share with you this morning was that he looked at me and smiled or nodded in appreciation or that he actually said “thanks” out loud. You know, that he was courteous in return. But nope. He didn’t acknowledge my presence at all. He stared stonily ahead and there was absolutely no flicker of recognition that another person was in his vicinity let alone had been nice to him. I don’t know whether he would have behaved the same way if I’d been a man, a child, an attractive young woman, a very elderly woman. Who knows. The odds are quite a bit higher, though, there would have been some reasonable human interaction had I occupied one of those body types instead of the middle-aged, “good-for-her” runner type of body complete with white hair and glasses that I do occupy. Since moving into this category of bodies I have become all but invisible to male strangers.
So what is the positive in all this, you might wonder (if you were reading these messages or caring about people like me)? Well, at first I didn’t see it as positive and I’m not completely comfortable with it, but as he ran past not acknowledging me, I said “you’re welcome” loud enough for him to hear. Initially I felt bad about being snarky and letting him get to me, but I’m over it. He didn’t make any sign that he heard me or cared but I feel good about not swallowing the slight. Maybe having been corrected will give him pause next time a nondescript middle-aged woman he doesn’t know does something kind for him. Maybe he’ll have the urge to thank her and might even push past his self-absorbed entitlement and actually thank her, out loud. There’s always hope.
And then the other positive is that there was a gorgeous rainbow right outside our front window for about 10 minutes a little bit ago. Thanks be.
May you be safe.
May you be happy.
May you be healthy and strong.
May your life unfold and intersect peacefully.
May you be thoughtful and polite.
May you enjoy rainbows.