I’m not rude, I’m just more special than you

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I start this article by thanking God for the gift of life, it has been a challenging two weeks. Enough said.

It’s certainly true that every person has a very strong and biased opinion of themselves. Under the right influences, our egos take over.

We think we are better than others and deserve special treatment. I personally have seen many of these colossal egos literally possess people to the extent that one would be tempted to call in a priest or prophet to exorcise that mad spirit of selfishness.

Last week, while driving around in the ever-so-busy capital of Zimbabwe, I stopped for fuel and coolant at a service station.

As the petrol attendant went into the kiosk to get my coolant, another customer drove onto the forecourt, hooted like a mad man, got out of his sleek Merc and shouted for service.

The conversation that transpired was: “I want petrol”, “Yes sir, I am still serving the lady”, “Serve me now, I am a busy businessman, this lady is of no significance (haana basa uyu)”.

Sitting there in my little skorokoro (ramshackle car), I was so dumbfounded that I told the attendant to serve the man, lest he went even more ballistic.

In response, the attendant continued to serve me at a very leisurely pace and cracked jokes with his back to the rude man, who then angrily jumped into his vehicle and sped off. Good grief!

Well, this writer is so obviously of no significance, in fact, I think I am literally invisible.

Many a time while standing in a queue at the country’s leading food courts (pick any, it happens at all of them), I have experienced and seen people walk straight to the front, past all of us crazies waiting in the queue to get service.

I suppose these people are so special and cannot for the life of them fathom standing in a queue; such behaviour is for lesser mortals like us.

Insanely this even includes employees, who should actually live by the PR rule “the customer is king”.

At a banking mall, a gentleman walked confidently past everyone in the queue, straight to the teller to get served.

Tired of being invisible, I asked for an explanation. His response was: “I work here.” What!? Does that mean employees are better and more special than customers? Surely if he was so special, he should have been waited on, with full butler service in the prestige banking offices.

How many times have you visited the doctor, and even though you were fourth in line, you remain number four for three hours while others are sneaked in?

If those cases needed urgent attention, surely the nurses would apologise for your inconvenience? Or how many times have you seen drivers in traffic jams, drive all the way in a turning lane, only to squeeze their cars in front of yours, because they are actually intending to go straight?

We need to check ourselves as a nation, where have our values gone? When we were growing up, we were taught to respect people, irrespective of who they were, what they did and where they were from.

We were also taught to be patient and wait for our turn, because anything other than that was just plain rude and disrespectful.

At the end of the day, we are all special. And if we are more equal than others (as in Animal Farm), then we need to patronise VIP places only and leave the general public alone. Your comments are most welcome: oldschoolvalues@ymail.com