The Nice Factor Or All About Karma

The Nice Factor Or All About Karma

Today I had minutes to kill.  Imagine that, twenty minutes all to myself.  So I ventured to grab a few new workout outfits.  I mean really, if you are going to sweat like a menopausal woman without a face towel, then at least look cute doing it.  By the way, I have a soft heart for you ladies.  I too will someday be dripping with sweat while eating ice cream and spritzing myself with a misty fan.  Don’t you worry.  I am not poking fun, I feel for you!

Anyways, I grabbed some goodies and can’t wait to squeeze myself into the Duo-Dry, Ultra-Light, Super Fitted Capris.  Yet, I might need to sweat it out in a sauna just to maneuver into these bad boys!  See, if I was menopausal I could just go about my day.  Now I have to clock into a dry heat box just to induce a sweat.  I’m telling you ladies, all that sweat is a blessing in disguise.

Alright, enough sweat talk as it is getting stinky in here.  So, while proceeding to the checkout I realized I was up against a mom with her preschool aged son.  So I began to walk faster, getting my hips into it, got the arms in full swing mode and alas, third place with her falling right behind in fourth.  So, I had two people in front of me in this fifteen lane checkout spread with #5 being the only lane open.

"proceed to checkout"
Yet, I started to feel horrible.  Why was I in such a hurry to beat this woman into the line?  We are both waiting here now side by side.  I sort of felt bad that I saw her in “proceed to checkout”motion and I threw down the Clorox wipes to beat her.  I guess that’s my competitive edge reminding me, “You go girl!”

Now typically I would be frustrated that there were eight store employees having a glee ‘ole time stocking the latest shipment of greeting cards while we had a now six person liner going on.  But remember, I had minutes to kill.  No rushing, what an exhilarating feeling!

Then the mom with the preschool aged kid started swaying back and forth at the glee pumped up employees stocking the cards and then back to the front of the line.  Then it started, the potty dance.  That anxious I have to go (not necessarily potty) but have to get us out of here to our next destination, like school, movement.  Yes, just like when a little kid has to take a whiz and they start swaying and rubbing their inner thighs together in hopes they will remain continent.  She had that going on because she needed to go…somewhere.  Then she proceeded to say to her son, “Oh honey, we really have to go but you also need to buy this gift for your after school Birthday Party.  Oh why do they have so many employees over there and only one register open? Maybe I should go ask them?”

Now, I must make huge reference here that this frantic mother had a respectable amount of composure to her calamity and frustration.  Despite the rocking and swaying like she was about to pee her pants in agitation, she remained very calm.  I admire her for that! Her son, who she was venting to, did not hear a word she was saying aloud to him as he was fixated on the conveniently placed candy bar display.

By the way, candy maker marketing executives, this is the most improper marketing tactic ever invented.  As if the guy with ten more pounds to go or the mom who just navigated through the store with her children is not hard enough, you have to cause us more friction by your conveniently placed candy display?  So the man with no will power has to be tempted with an array of high fructose laden, highly processed candy that he just cannot say no to?  What about the poor mom with screaming kids who desperately need to have candy or they will be scarred for life needing therapy if they don’t get a Whatchamacallit?  Just not fair to do this to us while we try to wait patiently in the checkout lane.  Just wrong, really!

Well enough said!  Now I was next in line and there was no hesitation on my end to give up my spot to this mama that I so desperately had to beat countless minutes prior.  My how irony works.

So, I let mama and son go ahead of me and she shyly said, “Oh thanks, you’re nice!”.  As if most people are not these days.  I overheard her mention to her candy bar fixated child, “We could have been really late for school.”  I should have felt REAL proud but if only she knew how I threw down the Clorox to beat her into the checkout line.  I felt horrible because I really was not as nice as she thought I was.

But I did have Karma on my side.  Or did I? Can Karma read minds? Could it know I had all intentions of taking her down to beat her into line?  Or does it forgive and allow for redemption?

A wise friend, in Yoda-like fashion, once told me, “what comes around, goes around and comes all the way back around.”  She may have borrowed the advice from a Justin Timberlake song, but nevertheless, I jumped on the Karma wagon.  I might be going out on a limb here, but I do feel Karma will be on your side, if in the end, you make the better decision.

So, next time I have three kids in tow, staring down the glee pumped up employees stocking “Thinking of You” cards while the kids are bugging me for candy all while I do the potty dance of frustration because I need to proceed on out of here, Karma might just step back and say, “You go next!”  And as another wise person once said, in not so Yoda fashion,  

“Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”
– Steve Jobs

So, I ask, do you believe in Karma or is it strictly because “Nice Matters”?


2 thoughts on “The Nice Factor Or All About Karma”

  1. I am team Karma all the way. But…but…you can’t say…My goal is to get this for free so I am going to be so nice that I get it, that’s manipulation….out of the goodness and kindness and truth of our hearts is when “nice things” or “good deeds” are stemmed from which in my opinion lead to good karma. Im not suggesting you manipulated the situation, you agreed with yourself about being wrong trying to beat her I line, but your gut and unselfishness took over and let her in front of you…well done!!!

  2. Yes my friend, nice matters and probably does lead to good or better Karma! I just have stood where this mom stood one day and remember how frustrated I felt. Even with my expressions of panic, fear and frustration, none of the lineholders stepped back, for me to proceed in front of them. She seemed genuinely SHOCKED that I did this for her. It shouldn’t be that way. Putting others first, in my opinion equals a good self worth. That positive self worth is Karma in action, perhaps? Thanks for “going for a aswim” and sharing your thoughts!

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