I am popping in between stops on tour to make a little post. I’m writing this post while on the greyhound headed to Ottawa! So much has happened in the last two weeks while on tour, I promise I will be making a post with photos soon! I also have gotten quite a bit of video of Coppelia that I can’t wait to cut together and put up for you all!
However, today, I’m taking the opportunity to write a little post about travel etiquette.
Today, while waiting for the bus to come and take me to Ottawa, I experienced an older individual attempting to cut into line. Now, I travel a lot, as you all know, and, as a result, I experience a lot of humanity’s quirks and have experienced both the most amazing things while traveling (somebody lending me their credit card to re-book a flight) and some of the most horrible (…anytime going through American customs!), but, I have a special disdain for cutting in line. To me, it exemplifies entitlement so perfectly and accurately that it simply makes me feel ill.
I tweeted the incident and was a bit surprised by the comments from people admonishing me for admonishing an elderly person for that kind of behaviour, suggesting that they have a right to cut in line due to their age.
I suppose I may have had different experiences with the elderly, but, I have been fortunate to have such amazing influences on my life. My grandmother, Angela Mior, is a shining example of how to grow old gracefully: she exercises every day. She keeps her mind sharp. She is always laughing, she is always learning and she continues to grow, and, at the age of 85, she can still kick my butt. I draw a lot of inspiration from my grandmother in my work because she is always smiling and telling jokes. She is a living Lucille Ball, that one!
I also have an elderly friend Bob who also serves to be a role model to me; he may walk with a cane, he may have some physical ailments, but, he still parties with the 20somethings at my favourite karaoke bar WAY harder than most young’uns and often closes the place down (I admit that I wimp out early, usually because I am training or gigging the next day!). And he never uses his disabilities as an excuse. Neither of these two people use their age as an excuse to gain advantages in life. Using something like age as a crutch, to me, expresses emotional weakness and nothing more. I’m fortunate to have such positive forces in my life such as my grandmother and Bob: they are teaching me how to grow old. They are teaching me to never stop learning, to never stop growing, and to always be aware of my surroundings and cognisant of others and how my behaviour affects them. Hopefully reading about them can inspire you folks to do the same.
I’m not saying to not treat the elderly with respect; I’m saying we don’t need to treat folks older than us with kid gloves. And folks who *are* older: please don’t allow feelings of entitlement to hold up lines or screw other people who have followed the rules out of their privileges. We’re all in it together, guys.