Is courtesy outdated too?


I ran several errands yesterday, which included grocery shopping. For some reason I was keenly aware of a consistent behavior among drivers, shoppers, and clerks. The behavior was the opposite of kindness. In my attempt to find a word that described such unkindness I looked for an antonym for kindness, but these words were extremely harsh such as: animosity, hatred, hostility, selfishness, and cruelty. So, I used a thesaurus to find words for unkindness and words such as malice, corruptness, and wickedness surfaced. I did not like these words either. I choose to think these people I encountered were preoccupied, ignorant, or rushed.

This world is fast paced, and we are all set in motion attempting to get everything we need and want completed. We have responsibilities we have needs, people rely on us, we are all stressed, and we are all in it together, so sometimes it really does feel like survival of the fittest. Why should we be shocked when the youngest and quickest believes they are justifiable in checking out their mountainous cart ahead of an elderly person with two items? After all, the elderly had their day when they were once young. And just maybe that is the issue.

Back in the day we were taught kindness primarily by example. There were certain courtesies bestowed to one another. It really had little to do with age and more with respect. Everyone smiled to others while saying good morning or some other pleasantry. Often, a person held the door for anyone that was behind them. If we crossed a shopper’s path, we said excuse me or pardon me with sincerity. We even offered our assistance if we felt someone looked as though they needed it, even though we were not employed by the grocery chain. We made every attempt to avoid blocking the entire aisle by keeping the cart to the right side and if we were in front of merchandise that someone else wanted, we apologized and promptly moved.

Yes, those were the days. We really had to be conscientious while shopping. Driving required that same alertness. Years ago, we never pulled out in front of another car unless it was accidental, and we were so appreciative that we were not rear-ended for our oversight. Perhaps if car engines still died out when one accelerated too fast, we would not have so many inconsiderate drivers.

Sometimes drivers appear to believe they are incognito, unrecognizable to others because they are hiding behind a steering wheel, but that is a fallacy. Occasionally I am shocked at who emerges from a car that just sped around me arriving at the Dollar Store 15 seconds before me.

Kindness is not hard work. Its simply treating others with the respect and dignity that you would like in return.

There are people who only follow the science; so here it is. Science and studies show there are physical effects to kindness. Kindness releases feel-good hormones. Serotonin gets a boost and endorphin levels rise, this reduces stress, lowers anxiety, and elevates a positive attitude. Studies have also shown kindness and volunteerism lowers inflammation in the body. Inflammation is linked to illnesses such as chronic pain, migraines, diabetes, and even obesity. Some of the chemicals released when we are kind lowers our blood pressure, which has a direct effect on the heart. And if that is not enough, we can feel an emotional connection with others and those emotions can boost our immune system.

“Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” ~Mark Twain

“Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.” ~Barbara DeAngelis

“Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” ~Scott Adams


Friday, Aug. 20, the Great Darke County Fair begins in Greenville.

Saturday, Aug. 21, from 9 a.m. to noon the Produce Stand to Benefit the Poor will be open. The stand is located on the corner of State Route 705 and U.S. Route 127

Saturday, Aug. 21, from 2 to 5 p.m. the Versailles Farefest downtown Versailles.

Monday, Aug. 23, from 1 to 3:30 p.m. is a Memory Lane Dance held at the Greenville VFW. Open to the public $5 admission at the door.

Tuesday, Aug. 24, beginning at 10 p.m. Versailles will be fogging the town.

Happy birthday wishes to Mike Reier, Marleen Hemmelgarn, Chris Kemper, Erin Rismiller, Karen Mescher, Michelle Hoehne, Brenda Reitz, Jennifer Koogler, Jan Monnin, Jill Weaver, Amber Wolfe, Terry Robison, Becky Snyder, Kyle Naugle, Denise Lawton, Kathy Lamb, Ken Wagner, Bernie DeMange, Darlene Bartram, Jim Archey, Ralph Schulze, Rocky Van Cleve, Bob Nieport, Theresa Boerger, Shirley Derr, and Matthew Rhoades as well as, anniversary wishes to Donna and Alvin Grillot (4), Carolyn and Daryl Shrader (14), Tammy and Mark Thomas (7), Jarica and Aaron DeLoye (8), Megan and Keith Wuebker (10), Kim and Scott Ward (15), Kelly and Frank Evers (19), Heather and Todd Prenger (23), Jeannie and Gary Grosch (25), Lori and Rob Cordonnier (27), Sandee and Ted Detrick (29), Dawn and Tony Brandt (31), Jody and Doug Groff (31), Shawn and Chris Kemper (34), Rebecca and Henry Pohlman (43), Denise and Larry Laub (44), Cheryl and Dave Fine (50), Joan and Larry Roll (53), Barb and Ed Kissinger (53), Linda and Carl Meyer (58), Kay and Dave Holfinger (62), Rose and Bernard Saintignon (63), and all those couples celebrating anniversaries but not named.

Please extend your heartfelt sympathy to the family and friends of Todd Wuebker (31), Brad Wuebker (35), Gary Wuebker (37), Gary Kremer (70), and all those who have passed and those who are in our hearts but not mentioned by name as the anniversary of their passing nears. Please give your supportive and healing prayers for the sick, terminally ill, caregivers, all those who have lost loved ones, the lonely, the addicted, and all who are struggling.

As an act of kindness, set a good example. You may not have your own reality television show, but you can still serve as an example to others. Do on to others as you would have them do unto you is a good rule of thumb. Obey the laws, respect others, offer words that encourage, help someone that may be struggling. You can create a positive change in the world by being positive change. A special thanks to Jean Runner who blessed me with an act of kindness.

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