Spent this week on the road in the hot spots otherwise known as Cleveland and St. Louis. I got there the way I always travel – through the air. Not on a carpet or broom, this time it was courtesy of Continental and American Airlines. The best or worst thing about travel is that you get to experience people at their best and worst. What was most interesting is that I got to experience the range of good, the bad and the real fucking ugly all in my own head. Yep, it was one of those travel weeks where I was the good, the bad and the real fucking ugly. The thing that made it all right, at least in my mind, was that I never acted on any of the evil thoughts that I had….and boy did I have them. Then again, didn’t that get Jimmy Cahter in trouble….something about lusting after women in his mind….oh well….
First the bad foks– people in general. They suck. That’s not fair, all people don’t suck, it’s just that the one’s that suck really suck and overwhelm all the good folks. Take the gate agent who totally ignored a pair of middle aged asian dudes who came up to the gate for the flight to Dayton Ohio only to find it had left 2 minutes prior. She dismissed them with a snide comment about going back to the gate they landed at. Evil Bitch (more about how she transforms into an angel later). Or maybe it was the 30 something guy the literally trampled an elderly gentleman trying to get a seat at the local tequilaria. What a dick.
We need to counter the bad, we need positude.
Positude is not a word. That sucks, because I think it’s a great word. I guess I invented a word.
FOOTNOTE: As I have come to find out, the concept and word of positude was trademarked in 1986 by the RCTaylor Group – so in fact, I did not invent the word. The RCTaylor Group is a group lead by CEO Jeff Taylor. Their purpose reads as follows: “Our purpose is to help our customers maximize employee performance and achieve exceptional results by providing high impact training in the areas of individual and team optimization, sales success, customer service, and leadership and management development.”
By all regards it looks like the RCTaylor group has been very successful in their commercial endeavor which is great because it looks as though they have done some very charitable work in addition.
Once again thanks Jeff and keep that pozitoodinal spirit burning bright.
Now back to my story
Well at least according to the on-line version of merriam-webster dictionary thingee.
My definition of positude is:
Demonstrating in every activity and interaction an attitude focused and perceived by all as upbeat, encouraging, optimistic and good. OK, now use positude in a sentence johnny.
I love the concept of positude, I guess I would since I invented it (remember I didn’t invent it)….that’s a wee bit narcissistic ain’t it.
In today’s world so much of the information we get thrown at us on a daily basis in negative. It’s way to easy to be negative….take that popular axiom on customer service – if one person has a negative experience they’ll tell 100 people. If it’s a positive experience they may tell 10.
As a society we are obsessed with the negative and it seems to be growing. Maybe there are just too many outlets for information today between the print media, television, radio and the internet that the negative shit gets communicated. Maybe it existed there in the past and it was simply not reported in such an accessible fashion.
The point I am belaboring folks is simple – don’t be predictable. Negative is predictable and to be honest people look to exploit negativity for personal gain. Let’s counter the bad foks by demonstrating absolute positudeness.
Next theREAL FUCKING UGLY FOKS– these people are happiest when everyone around them is miserable. Take the guy who berated the gate agent bitch because he didn’t have an assigned seat on a flight to Hartford. Like it was her fault that fucking americano airlines oversold the flight and that the flight was under some wacko imposed weight restriction. This guy went on and on and on. Dropping the f-bomb like it was the word the. Hey Mr. Fucking Ugly – take it up with this guy – Gerard J. Arpey – Chairman, President and CEO, AMR Corp. and American Airlines. Drop him a note and share your feelings with him. Or maybe it was the guy who knocked down the 7 year old girl with his wheelie luggage. What a dick. Or maybe it was AMericano Airlines. I watched at least 10 people come to the gate for the flight to Dayton (didn’t know it was that popular a destination) who were on a flight from San Diego. They missed the flight by 2 minutes. The Dayton flight was scheduled to leave at 6:40pm. The door to the gangway was closed at 6:36pm. Why the hell couldn’t Americano Airlines hold the flight for 5 minutes to accommodate these folks. UGHHHHHHHHHHH
The Good Folks– first there was the flight attendant who came back with the two middle aged Asian dudes. She tried to reason with the Gate Agent bitch (soon to be angel) and was rebuffed. She then explained to the Asian dudes what was going on and I watched as she personally took the time to walk them up to the ticket counter so they could rebook their flights. That was beautiful. Then there was, um, there was, um….sorry I didn’t witness any other acts of goodness on this trip.
The Gate Agent Bitch Angel and Me – Yep, I too was one of those people without a seat assignment on the overbooked, weight restricted flight to Hartford. For two hours I had know idea if I would get on the flight. To make matters worse as I waited any other flight options I had departed. So for two hours I went through therange of emotions from…hahaha have a drink you’ll get on the plane, to, we’llstorm the gate and make them fly us to Hartford. Interesting side note: this woman named Aimee was also on the evil no seat assignment list and had to get back to hartford and I asked her would she rather have a seat on the plane or a winning lottery ticket for $10M. She said the plane ticket….weirdness….but I felt her pain. So we go through all of this, they board the entire plane and there are 5 or 6 of us waiting for the seat lottery. All I want to do is rip people’s faces off. I am as ugly inside as I have been. Then it happens – The first name called was Anne something. I raised my hand and said, with glee, “hey that’s me.” No one bought the notion that this middle aged, overweight, bald guy with a goatee was actually Anne….Damn…But something wonderful did happen. For the first time in two hours people laughed, including the Gate Agent Bitch Angel. Next the most amazing thing happened, she actually called my name and the names of the other folks waiting to get on the plane. In a lottery winning state of mind (I actually have no idea what that state of mind is but on this day I had won the seat lottery) I swooped in and got my ticket and gave the Gate Angel a big kiss on the cheek. She blushed and said that was the nicest thing anyone’s done all day.
So we board the plane and have an uneventful flight and land in Hartford. Sitting next to me was an older woman with a number of bags and a plant. When we landed they flight attendant informed us that we’d have to go down the steps walk across the tarmac and then the steps into the terminal. The older woman voiced a concern about her ability to carry all her bags and navigate the rickity stairs. So I leaned over and told her I would help her and carry some of her bags. Off the plane we go, we chitchat and I find out that she taught at a catholic (i think) school in the town I grew up in. So as we entered the terminal she announced that she had to go to the ladies room. I stayed with her bags until she came out. She said she could handle her stuff from their and we bid each other adieu. Not before she told me, “god bless you.” It rocked me to my soul because it wasn’t a “godblessyou” someone might say to you after a sneeze, it was a “god bless you” from her soul. It made all the noise of the day and the week disappear. It was positude. It was 11:30pm at night and the world was OK. By the way – this woman had been traveling all day from Los Angeles to Hartford and still had the ability to positively impact this person’s cranky ass.