Wednesday, December 2, 2009
The people surrounding us laughed out loud. Guess they'd never thought of it that way. But what are the statistical odds that in any given group of people every single person is going to be pleasant? Life's a lot easier when you assume that there will always be someone in the room you'd rather not have to deal with.
I once saw a book in a catalog called How to Hug a Porcupine. I love that title. I've remembered it for over a decade, though I never read the book. There are almost always ways to get along with prickly people safely. The key is remembering that the goal is to get along with them, rather than make them go away. (Once in a while distance really is the best solution. But not always.)
Like many people, I have occasional quill-like tendencies. As a young adult, I congratulated myself on having blunted most of them. Then I had kids, and discovered I have more prickles than I'd previously imagined. Kids'll do that to you: reveal your flaws. It's one of the good things about having children.