Can we all get along?
Today, as I was headed out on my bicycle, my neighbor called out, "Have a nice ride". What's wrong with that? And why did it make me bristle? She was just wishing me well.
Am I an old coot, like my wife, whose family tradition demands that she always have something to bitch about? I remember feeling the same way when another neighbor, living in the same house at a different time from the current one, said "Getting some 'essersise'?" I don't 'take rides', or 'get exercise'!!!
Perhaps I once did. For about a year after I became a retired person, and before the River Trail, I had a ten-mile course worked out that I rode every day. After the opening of The Trail, however, I began using it for running errands, and after I became a Flickr, I began using the bike and the trail for photography trips, sometimes with a specific goal, sometimes to seek a specific goal. The Trail provides a safe way to get to town, as well as to the pharmacy, the grocery store, and points beyond.
I think I'll shoot for a trip to the barber shop downtown tomorrow.
Today, I was going to the pharmacy, as I'd done many times before. I wasn't "taking a ride". When I arrived back at home, I told myself, "I've been somewhere, and I've accomplished something".
I can remember long ago, getting extremely hostile to hear the great, wide mayor of Austin (back when she was a Democrat) insist on saying "energy", when she meant "electricity produced by the City of Austin". I even faulted our poor old puppet president of the early '80s when he'd refer to the United States of America as "America". How innocuous can it be to call our country "America" as if it were THE America? But it offends me, and always has.
I suppose it all boils down to that very perceptive Rufism, "if you don't think like me, then you're the anti-me". We all expect everyone to think along the same lines we do, or their thinking is all wrong. "That's human nature", as Uncle Jim would say. "Everyone should think the way I think". That goes for religion, politics, friendship, ad infinitum.
Why can't we get over it, and "get along"?