My thoughts on life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Oh, and sports too.
the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and return kindness
If you have ever seen In The Line of Fire, with Clint Eastwood and John Malkovich, then the quote I used as the title for this blog is one you should know well. Although John Malkovich’s character’s desire to be appreciated by Clint Eastwood’s character is clearly misguided, it doesn’t change the fact that we have all had that moment, on any given day, where we just want to look somebody in the face and say those 10 words. However, the fact that we want to say them, isn’t the problem. It’s the fact that we feel like we need to say them, because showing gratitude toward someone who does something for you, has almost become a thing of the past. Why?
Is it entitlement? I clearly understand that we live in a very entitled society these days. Everybody thinks that they deserve what ever good comes their way. I’m not sure exactly when that started, although I do trace a lot of the stupidness of today’s society back to the birth of participation trophies. The true Genesis of the pussification of America. The “everybody is great and everybody’s a winner” mentality. It’s ridiculous. All it does is create a generation of kids who don’t know what it’s like to be told no, or to ever have to deal with the idea that someone is better than they are at something. If you don’t ever have to learn what it’s like to lose, or fail at something, then you will never know what it’s like to show true appreciation for those who may have helped you to accomplish something. It’s quite sad.
Are we hypocrites, though? I only ask that question because when we do something nice for somebody, and they do show appreciation, we always tell that person that it’s no big deal, and that they don’t have to thank us. So, do we only want the gratitude just so that we can prove we’re too humble to accept it? Does that mean showing gratitude and being humble are like oil and water? Both are great, but separately? You have to admit, those two things play an interesting dance with each other at times. Very peculiar.
All that being said, it is really annoying when you go out of your way for somebody and they show you virtually no appreciation. For me, I can’t say thank you fast enough when someone helps me. It doesn’t matter how insignificant the help is, I will never not let that person know that they are appreciated. It’s so easy to do. It’s just words. Well, it’s just words most of the time. Sometimes, you have to up your game a little bit and do little bit more than just say thank you.
This is when someone does something so meaningful for you that it requires you to really show your gratitude, and yes, I mean doing something, instead of just saying something. Either going out of your way to help them with something that is equally as important to them, as a way of showing your appreciation for what they did for you, or taking the time to do something extra nice for that person, i.e. buy a gift, to express how grateful you really are for what they did. Like I said before, a good friend will tell you that you do not need to do such a thing, but that is just the humbleness speaking. Nobody ever does something big for another person expecting a reward, but deep down we wouldn’t mind one. Furthermore, showing such gratitude for something big, isn’t a prerequisite for that person to help you the next time you do something big, but repeatedly not doing something special, may very well lead to that person not helping you in the future. As we all know, that’s where the animosity begins. The belief that someone is willing to go out of their way for you repeatedly, but you are not willing to do the same for them, or show enough appreciation for them when they do it. That is a sure fire way to see a friendship go south very quickly. So don’t do that shit. Never pass up an opportunity to show gratitude toward someone. It’s the right thing to do.