Monday, September 22, 2014

He was a nice man

"Hey! Not coming to the party tonight? Heard that you are saddled with an urgent job?"

"I am coming, no fear! I will request Akash to make this presentation for me."

"This is the fourth time this month that you are tapping him. Will he agree?"

"He is a nice guy. He will certainly help."

* * *

"Amma! I want two months salary in advance."

"You cannot keep asking...."

"Nitu! Give her the money. Where will our servant maid go in an emergency?"

"Akash! I don't think we should..."

"It will not bankrupt us, Nitu!"

* * *

"My Dad has been hospitalized. Can you do my presentation for me? I need to go to the hospital."

"I wish I could do it for you, Akash! But I am already tied up with urgent work."

An hour later

"Akash did your job so often and you refused today. If he sees you now, leaving for home, do you think he will help in future?"

"I would have helped him if I could. But I had so much work that I had to sit half an hour longer at office. I would need to sit another couple of hours to do his job. What can I do? Akash is a nice guy. He will understand."

* * *

"We need you to come early in the morning and just do the dishes. We have to go to the hospital."

"Amma! I cannot. The corner house lady will yell at me if I come fifteen minutes late."

* * *

"You know what? Akash has become nasty these days. Can you believe it? He refused to help merely because he does not want to sit late. And I thought he was a nice man."

* * *

"I thought that the middle house lady's husband was a good man. Can you believe it? I asked him for only one month's advance and he refused? And I thought he was a nice man."

51 comments:

  1. How our interpretation of what or rather who is nice changes..And all of it depends on our own selfish needs being heeded to...

    Now who was it who wan't nice to you Suresh? :D ;)

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    1. Everyone is nice to me, Naba! :) The point also is the it is we who convert people to non-nice by showing them that we only exploit them and do not really feel the need to be nice in return :)

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  2. this post reflects the very truth behind most of the 'nice' and 'ever-smiling' people we interact daily. Most people always try to exploit others and tag them nasty when they see through their petty frauds and refuse to extend further help.

    nice one!

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    1. Love the fact that the intent of the post communicated so well. Thanks

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  3. How we expect! We never think of others or their needs...

    "Do unto others as you would like others to do unto you."
    I try doing that. Being nice has its share of brickbats! Remember the ANYWAY poem?

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    1. I do, Anita! The ANYWAY poem reflects the best state of mind - when you cannot achieve that state of mind and try only to model your behavior it does leave scars on you when you come face-to-face with exploiters.

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  4. The nice person tag is actually very difficult to honor because it often means exploitation. Like you pointed out, nice people are always around to help, will always understand, and will make time no matter what. The same standards don't apply to us even though we all are nice :).

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  5. HA HA ... sorry fro the laugh ! EVERYONE is nice TILL our (swaarth ) needs clash . And Everyone is nice till you expect from him/her .... giving always is fine :)
    AND
    If you are the one who bears the 'NICE TAG' then wear it ligtly because you can not be nice to ALL, ALL THE TIME .... some times when you are nice to them, you are not being nice to yourself and vice -versa

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    1. Perfectly encapsulated, Kokila! With the additional proviso that, by the way we react, we drive people to being not so nice when they started off being nice :)

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  6. What an intelligent way to decode the 'nice person' tag. Sometimes in your attempt to please all, you please none. Good one.

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    1. It is a Red Queen's race - you need to keep running to stay in the same place. AND, no-one is willing to do the same for you either :)

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  7. I have been Akash so many times in my professional and personal life. And although I would like to believe that I have learnt my lessons, there are times when I realize that I have been Akash all over again :)

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    1. The only thing to do is to continue being nice, WITHOUT expectations from the others, just because that is what makes YOU happy, Jairam! People, mostly, exploit and it is tough to feel happy about the situation, though!

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  8. Wonderful idea conveyed with so little words!

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    1. Thanks Adarsh! I thought that this semi-ficitonalising was the best way to communicate this :)

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    2. That is right. A completely non-fictional account would be a tightrope walk, and it will be quite easy to start ranting, which usually puts people off even when it shouldn't. This was perfect -- minimal and very effective.

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  9. Be nice and soon you turn into a sucker.

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    1. Yes, Indu! We all want nice people around us BUT, by our actions, we end up encouraging the not nice and discouraging the nice.

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  10. Very interesting post! It's such a common thing to define "nice" and at our own convenience, keep changing these definitions. How human!

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  11. We ourselfs are the reason for exploiting genuine people.They are in our good books as long as they are good helpers but chuck them the moment they refuse to bend down. Selfish we are!!

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  12. Short but power-packed post :) How we keep expecting and expecting others to be nice to us, regardless of how we behave toward them! Uff...ye duniya bhi na....;)

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  13. Our interpretation of a nice man...If he is nice, we utilize him. If he isnt, we hate him.

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    1. AND by acting so we convert the nice to the not so nice :)

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  14. I so agree with you, Suresh. You be nice and nicer and nicer, people will take you for granted. The moment you ask for a favour, then they will show their niceness. Been there, done that. Learned stuff the hard way. I am sure I must have done the same for someone somewhere sometime.

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    1. Yes - all of us want more people to be nice but do we do enough to encourage other people to be nice? :)

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  15. Brilliant! How we make and break people with our own perceptions and definitions.. very well put :)

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    1. Thanks Seeta! AND, even where we have a nice person by our own definition what is the feedback we give him about how much we appreciate his being nice? :)

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  16. The others continue to exploit this goodness perceiving them to be 'dumb'doormats. Despite this some continue to be 'nice' because it's inherent in them. But unknown to others, they are wiser in their assessment of the people and know whom to trust.

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    1. Yes - unfortunately, the process of getting that wisdom is fraught with pain and some get embittered and cease to be nice.

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  17. This reminds me of my first boss who told us that, for the workers in any factory, "strict, demanding bosses are ‘a**holes’, while lenient, laidback bosses are ‘idiots’!"

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    1. Yup! And since people prefer being a**holes to being idiots, a boss tries for tough, demanding if he possibly can :)

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  18. Truly speaking, we all are connected to each other for some or the other greed/selfishness and when our need is not fulfilled, we would become sad. And this is where the practice of 'Niskaam Karma' comes in picture ;)

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    1. If not that, at least being nice to a nice man may be a start :)

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  19. Guess it is most driven by envy - Western nations that a country like India is able to achieve something like this and all the social workers etc that the scienctists are grabbing more attention than them.

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    1. Ah! The comment for "Mangalyan" comes here :) Yeah - Frogs in the well :)

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  20. Guess this is one of those things I have already heard from your during one of our one on one discussions.

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  21. A nice shift. Well done.

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  22. So very well put! the person is nice till the time they are in agreement with your demands. And if not, they have either 'changed' or not nice anymore. So true!

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