I hate assholes. Those assholes who walk in the middle of the roads showing their hand to stop cars like they are Ironman or something. Those assholes who thrust their shopping carts in front of yours at supermarkets pretending they had no idea where the line is (Of course you wouldn’t, you are a DICK!). Those assholes who will inch their cars in front of you in between a traffic jam so they can overtake you when the light is green (And then I inch forward mine because, you know, Fuck you!). Recently, this one asshole came close to hitting a pedestrian because he was reversing and hadn’t cared to look in his mirror if anyone was behind him. And to top it all, when the pedestrian started shouting at him, the asshole started shouting back saying it was his fault!!
Umm.. that asshole was me. After the pedestrian moved on, I realised that because of the assholes around me, I’ve become an asshole too. I do my ‘Thank you’s to everyone who does something nice, but I am conveniently not nice enough myself, because ‘why should I be when no one is, right?’ Well, that’s a really shitty way of looking at life and I liked myself better before the city made me an asshole too. So I started this personal experiment.
From that day on, every time an asshole is stranded on the road because he/she is crossing in the middle of traffic, I stop and let them go. Whenever someone pretends that they didn’t know where the line started, I let them go ahead of me anyway. Whenever someone shoves their car in front of mine, I actually reverse my car a little so they can go straight ahead.
At first, I found it amusing to watch the surprised expressions of those people who would just be confused and perhaps even suspicious at what’s happening. ‘Why is this asshole being nice? That makes no sense!’ But for every one person who’d not care about someone being nice to them, there’d be three people who’d smile and say a polite ‘Thank you’. And you know what, there’d also be that odd person every once a while who’d actually feel guilty for being an asshole, and be nice back to me and let me go ahead!
Seeing them, I realised that just like me, they were being assholes because they too think that the only way of getting something done in this city is by being one. That there’s really no point in being nice anymore, because you’d ‘finish last’ like all nice guys do. But you know what? Just like me, they are wrong too. And I know that because they smiled. And I know that because I smiled back. And I know that what started as a random ‘altruistic’ experiment is now actually a very selfish one, because I feel SO GOOD by seeing them smile! I feel awesome every time I’m nice because not only when I give out a little goodwill, I’m getting quite a lot back.
And strangely, I’ve now started enjoying those frustrating drives in traffic jams. I’ve stopped losing my shit every time someone breaks the queue. I’m generally happier and calmer now because my mood does not depend anymore on whether people around me are assholes. Because I know it’s not really their fault: by being assholes ourselves, we have been breeding assholes in our city, and in our society.
I don’t know how long this will last (or if it’s the side effects of the drugging – all this started much before though), but I’ve started enjoying life in this ever-busy, overcrowded, always-in-a-hurry city just a little more. Give it a try… the world already has enough assholes.. and being nice is actually quite a lot of fun!
Note: This post was first published on September 24, 2013.
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