Recently, I listened to a podcast that took me down memory lane. It has been
quite a few years, but I remember when watching a movie was a lot more work
than turning on a streaming device. No, I’m not talking about DVD rentals
either, which is still a thing. Go back even further, to the days of video
cassettes. If you don’t know what they are, go have a look, you might find it mildly
entertaining to see what we had to put up with. Back then, video stores were
found in many small towns like mine. It was one way to get cheap entertainment
for the whole family.
After walking by the front counter at the entrance, I remember hearing the
buzzing of rewinding machines. Next to them were huge stacks of VHS tapes. On
the front covers of each box was a sticker asking the viewer to please rewind
the tape. Would you believe some customers still did not rewind? I imagine some
people innocently forgot. However, I suspect numerous people did not care if
the clerk or next customer had to rewind the tape. Perhaps they themselves had
to rewind the tape when they got it, and this was an act of retribution. We will
never know about the person who chose not to rewind, or maybe we will.
The human condition seems to make this concept an ever-present reality,
despite how things have changed. Selfishness starts out as a tiny, metaphorical
monster. When fed, it will lead us to do any manner of things, which at the
beginning we might not otherwise have done. Being inconvenienced is something
that most people find cumbersome. However, inconvenience provides great
opportunities to starve the selfishness that lies within us.
While we no longer have to rewind videos out of courtesy for others, there
is much we can do to be courteous to others. If you have something to share,
consider it. If you borrow something, make sure you give it back in at least
the same shape you got it in, if not improved. If you have any difficulty thinking
about how you could be kind to someone, simply think about how you want things
to be for yourself and then make it happen for someone else. Most of the time,
it is pretty easy.
At times, I engage in a little conspiracy theory and often create my own. I
suspect that most of the people who chose not to rewind are the same people
that leave their shopping carts stranded in parking lots anywhere but in the
designated cart return spots. Fight the urge. Don’t be the kind that doesn’t
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