Is this anyone you know? (And please don’t say me.)
This person took over my life for a few minutes this week in a whirlwind of inflated ego and self-importance. My daughter and I were getting manicures when a well-dressed, frantic woman teetered into the salon on very high heels.
HOW LONG WILL IT BE? she shouted, pointing to her watch, as if we were deaf and non-English-speaking. Ten minutes, said the pleasant woman doing my nails. She nodded to me. I have a customer.
Not good, came the reply, as the exasperated woman dropped into a seat and started flipping through the nearest magazine. Sigh. Sigh. SIGH.
HOW LONG EXACTLY? she asked a few minutes later. She said she was seeking a repair of the gel nails that were falling off her fingers, one by one. She stood, poking her watch.
I. HAVE. A. VERY. BUSY. SCHEDULE.
Ten minutes, the woman repeated, looking desperately at me, as if my nails should finish themselves. To no avail, though, and the woman eventually whirled back out the door, strains of I JUST CANNOT BELIEVE THIS in her wake.
I felt a little guilt, but mostly amazement. All this and the mall, too, we laughed. Then, the next day, I had an in-your-face lesson. What’s that saying about leaving judgment to the ultimate judge?
I got an email saying I’ve been selected for this year’s Who’s Who among Executives and Professionals. I had to reply by today to be in it. Woo-hoo! This accolade would be a welcome addition to any resume, the note said. Well! That is very true. How about that?
I felt my ego inflate. OK, it just might be deserved. I’ve been working as a reporter for 22 years. I know what I’m doing and I’m pretty good at it. Then I looked closer at the salutation. Dear ,,? Are you kidding me? Instant deflation.
After I thought about it, though, I decided it was great they’d sent the letter to me, and, apparently, everyone else in the country. Don’t we all want and need to feel like we are special, and that others can readily see and appreciate that worth?
The woman in the salon certainly did. She just went about it in the entirely wrong way. I wished later that I’d had her email address so I could forward the letter along. I’m sure it would have been welcomed by someone as busy and important and deserving.