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Living Loz
In which I get rantastic and preachy in the space of two hundred words... 
21st-Feb-2010 11:29 pm
Loz Cola
My general rule for myself in life is: try not to be an arsehat. Or, if you discover you have been an arsehat/realise you're acting like an arsehat, acknowledge it (and, hopefully, if you're feeling brave and strong, apologise.)

I've fucked up in the past, I'll no doubt fuck up in the future and I take responsibility for those errors.

I seem to constantly encounter people who don't care about the harm they cause, and it vexes me.

I'm not Christian, but that whole 'do unto others' thing makes perfect sense to me, as selfish a dictum it may be (here's a thought: why not be kind because you can? ETA: here's another thought: try not to be extra facetious when making a point with a tenet you clearly believe in.) I would rather people not punch me in the neck, ergo I don't punch people in the neck --- even though there have been times I've really, really been tempted.

Is it so hard to live your life with a basic regard for others?
21st-Feb-2010 02:24 pm (UTC)

Personally, I think it's harder to live your life without a basic regard for others... but then schadenfreude has never been a kink of mine. *g*
21st-Feb-2010 02:37 pm (UTC)

Most inclinations I have towards schadenfreude tend to be tamped down by my humiliation squick. I do not like seeing others humiliated/in pain, at all.
21st-Feb-2010 02:24 pm (UTC)
Uhm, I don't really think "do unto others" is a selfish dictum. It doesn't mean that if you're nice to others, good things will happen to you, and that's your reason to be good. It means that the best way of treating people is how you'd like to be treated. At least that's how I understand it.

Other than that, yes, some people should be a bit nicer.
21st-Feb-2010 02:28 pm (UTC)
I may or may not have been exaggerating for effect, :D (But I certainly know enough people who hold the narrow 'I am only kind for the reward' interpretation.)
21st-Feb-2010 02:34 pm (UTC)
Y'know, just from looking around me, apparently it *IS* that hard to live your life with basic regard for others. Although I've never found it that way. I am constantly in AWE of the asshattery which occurs around me. It honestly seems to me that some people go out of their way to be assholes. I dunno, I actually despair nowadays. I'm surprised when people AREN'T arseholes, which is a tragic, tragic, state of affairs.

Although happily I do know a good number of people who aren't arseholes, who are kind and lovely. It's generally people I encounter on my commutes/through work/who aren't my friends etc. who are the arseholian ones.
21st-Feb-2010 02:49 pm (UTC)
I know some people who do deliberately go out of their way to be arseholes, and then other people who enable them by finding their antics amusing.

In fiction, I can just about handle it. In real life, my patience wears incredibly thin.
21st-Feb-2010 02:53 pm (UTC)
I agree with what you say but I hope you won't mind me pointing out that the "do unto others" rule isn't selfish at all. It's a guideline as to what is right - a way to gauge your words and actions and their effect on other people. Before you act, think "how would I feel if someone did this to me?" You don't get rewarded for it.

Here endeth today's sermon. ;)
21st-Feb-2010 02:59 pm (UTC)
I think I'm going to edit this post in order not to offend people with a joke that obviously fell flat.
21st-Feb-2010 04:07 pm (UTC)
When you realize that a scarily significant percentage of the population is lacking in empathy, and therefore treat other people as their personal punching bags, one can see why the human race has trouble with the golden rule. Even nice people occasionally do this. I don't know why we do it, but it seems to be innate in human nature.
22nd-Feb-2010 10:35 am (UTC)
I guess it's survival instinct. :(
21st-Feb-2010 04:59 pm (UTC)
It's astonishing how few people actually know how to apologise, or even understand that apologising doesn't really weaken you - it actually makes you stronger. This may or not be relevant to the particular circumstances you're thinking of; it's just an observation from sad experience.

I'm not really contributing much here, am I? Just wanted to express solidarity, that's all.
22nd-Feb-2010 10:37 am (UTC)
I think it takes great strength to apologise, but yes, I don't think your strength is depleted any by doing so.
21st-Feb-2010 05:30 pm (UTC)
Nothing valuable to say except I'm right there with ya. It boggles me that people are always telling me, "Oh you're so kind"; because all I see me doing is treating other people how I hope they will treat me. I am nobody special, I'm not Supergirl because I am able to treat others with a modicum of respect and consideration...
22nd-Feb-2010 10:40 am (UTC)
People live under this weird misapprehension I'm nice. I'm not particularly nice at all, but like you, I believe in basic common decency.
21st-Feb-2010 09:23 pm (UTC)
Most people I know are generally kind and considerate. But the minority who are fuckers seem to loom much larger, and take up much more space in my psyche (space apparently reserved for me to think "what? how? WHY? Who would do that?" etc).
22nd-Feb-2010 10:41 am (UTC)
I know a lot of kind and clever people, but there's one or two people in my acquaintance who I'm rather 'grrr' about.
22nd-Feb-2010 04:41 am (UTC)
When I am particularly vexed by an arsehat, I try to find comfort in remembering that at least I only have to cope with the arsehattery for a finite amount of time. The arsehat has to cope with BEING an arsehat 24/7. I reckon that, over the long haul, that's far more unpleasant.
22nd-Feb-2010 10:42 am (UTC)
You have a point there, but I am not sure many of these types of people care.
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