One day some time ago I was chasing my very active son in a school yard waiting to pick up my daughter. Another Mom was sitting in her vehicle leisurely perusing a magazine and she put down her window and exclaimed, “You should be as thin as a rail chasing him all day!” Translation: You are not thin. Further extrapolation: You are fat. Like when Donald Trump says, “You’re fired!” with the emphasis on fired. You’re fired. You’re fat. It was an insult wrapped in, well, another insult. From a total stranger. Sometimes offenders are clever enough to veil the insult in a glossy fake compliment. Not this time.
In this case, I didn’t have time to reply. Nor really the desire. I am not a confrontational person to begin with. But I am not a pushover either. In another lifetime, sitting around and volleying insults with this stranger might be a good time, but in this one, I am trying to enjoy myself! And frankly, I am too busy. My father always advises, “In one ear and out the other”. But I reply, “Ahhhh, Dad, my brain is between my ears.”
I logically know that “Thin as a rail” is just an expression. I also want to believe this unknown observer was just saying something and it probably wasn’t meant in malice. I want to believe that. She wanted to make a connection with me and chose the wrong words. It should be no big deal. No pun intended. But maybe not. You never quite know what someone’s motivation is, right? And a year or so later, here I am talking about it. I guess the message to all humanoids (especially our children) is we had better be careful how we choose our words. Just saying…..ciao for now….