mean old me



Coming home from lunch today I was behind a thirty-something-year-old guy at a stop sign when I saw him chuck a Big Gulp cup out his window.  This a total trigger for me.  And knowing that it is a trigger I heard myself say, "Oh, dang it," because I knew I would have to follow him and confront him about it.  Yep, I just knew that about myself.

I hate confrontation, really, but as I get older I realize that sometimes you have to say things that need saying.  Like when I hold parent/teacher conferences, and after I inform the parents that their son is not cutting it on letter sounds the mom looks at her son (her 5-year old special education son), points at his chest and says, "You need to study more!"  At this moment I make sure to say that thing that needs saying.  I say, "Actually, we can't expect him to take the initiative to study on his own.  He needs you to guide him through it."

Confrontation doesn't always need to take the form of yelling or arguing.  It can be a calm interaction where you state your opinion, which is opposed to the other person.  Unless you throw garbage out your window in my town.  In that case you may get an earful that sounds a little something like, "Was I mistaken when I saw a big cup flying out of your window back there?  I will chase you down again, you better believe it."

19 comments

Julie | November 8, 2011 at 5:39 PM

Uh oh. That is a HUGE trigger for me too. I'm so glad you chased him down! I'm so curious about his reaction.

Garden of Egan | November 8, 2011 at 6:16 PM

You see my hero! I totally heart you.
Love that you are willing to take a stand.

DeNae | November 8, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Wha--? Where's the end of the story?? I was hoping for bloodshed. Or at least a return of the big cup in the litterer's lap. Make one up, Kaz! "So then, I pulled my rocket launcher out of the bag where I keep flannel board stories, pointed it at his tail pipe, and littered Springville with Beemer parts, far as the eye could see." We'll TOTALLY believe you, I promise!

Cherie | November 8, 2011 at 7:36 PM

I am right there with you sista!
I love that as we get older we feel so good in our skin that we can be bold and take action.
You did good!

gigi | November 8, 2011 at 7:44 PM

Hey, I saw my mama do that time and again! I haven't seen anyone throw something out the window in years and years. Wonder if I would do the same thing?
Probably :)
You go girl!

Jenny P. | November 8, 2011 at 8:01 PM

I will never forget my Mom telling the story of how her teeny tiny friend, just over 5 feet tall, picked up a bag of trash that the driver of the pick up truck in front of her had thrown onto the road, and followed the guy until he stopped so she could give him his trash back. To think she wasn't even intimidated by the massive gun rack and hunting rifle hanging in the back window of the truck! Way to be bold. Sometimes things DO need to be said.

Kristina P. | November 8, 2011 at 9:11 PM

He was one of my minions, out to destroy the earth.

Handsfullmom | November 8, 2011 at 9:40 PM

Wow, I think I would just cower. =) But you're right that sometimes hard things have to be said.

Valerie | November 8, 2011 at 10:24 PM

I think being able to handle confrontation is a great talent! I would probably end up crying! :)

Momza | November 9, 2011 at 7:40 AM

love this. and DeNae's comment!
My trigger for confrontation is seeing an adult verbally or physically abuse a child in public--yanking an arm, pulling hair, yelling obscenities--yeah, it takes me about two seconds to climb out of my comfort zone and speak up. The adult's response is nearly always shock and disbelief that someone else would say something to them at all.

Momza | November 9, 2011 at 7:41 AM

P.S. I think I need to invest in a rocket launcher to make my point more serious, as DeNae has suggested.

Barbaloot | November 9, 2011 at 8:19 AM

You seriously chased someone down?! That's awesome.

Becca | November 9, 2011 at 7:49 PM

You go, Kaz. Tell it.

mermaid gallery | November 9, 2011 at 9:04 PM

speaking up makes a difference...we need to use our power....i am so glad you use yours.....

Connie | November 9, 2011 at 10:17 PM

Oh yeah! Super Kazz, keeping American cities clean. Way to go!

Grumpy Grateful Mom | November 10, 2011 at 10:12 PM

I LOVE that you did this! And you're saying I should actually help my daughter study?

Lara | November 12, 2011 at 1:36 PM

Love that you chased a litterbug down (does anyone even call them that anymore?)!

But love even more that you are willing to advocate for the children with their own parents.

wendy | November 13, 2011 at 4:26 PM

YOU GO GIRL.....I hate it when people just throw trash out.
I can't understand why everyone doesn't feel a responsibility to Take Care of and Respect our World.

I would have liked to have been a fly on your car window, while that was going down.

Melanie Jacobson | November 13, 2011 at 10:59 PM

You are SO stinking cool.