Monday, September 27, 2004

Staring Match

I thought I'd put that quote there, because it's a different philosophy than what the rest of the world seems to tell you. Don is the choir director at my college, and this statement was actually made when explaining what to do if your friends go to the Mass you're singing at and try to make you laugh.
I liked it because it can be applied to so many things in life. If someone does something to make you really angry and upset, most people would get angry and upset. They certainly wouldn't concentrate on what they were supposed to be doing, they'd be distracted and go after the person.
But isn't that what the distracter wants? Doesn't he or she just want to get you upset? Isn't that the reason why they're acting the way they are?
What if your reaction were different? That would certainly take the fun out of it, in the Bully's eyes, if you wouldn't give the desired reaction. So why not try to "stare them down with the loving face of God"? You're not doing anything wrong, so no one can legally punish you. You're not reacting and getting upset, so the Bully doesn't have his fun. You're not even glaring at the person, or showing signs of being upset, so that would take all the fun out of it.
I wonder what international relations would be like if people started doing this:

Russian Ambassador: We demand you return our lost submarine immediately!
US President<smiling cheerfully>: Thank you for stopping by. Would you like some tea?
(Can you tell that I've been reading The Hunt for Red October?)

That would certainly be interesting to watch. Who knows if it would work, but it's good to try new approaches to things, isn't it? Keep the other person on their toes. Besides, if everyone smiled all the time, maybe people would actually start being happy. There's a thought.
Maybe it'll be worth something.



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