Monday, January 16, 2006


I was watching an Allstate Insurance commercial this weekend. I had seen it several times before, but this time I must have been listening closer. The ad was about their 'no accident' reward program. For every year you go without an accident, they will reduce your insurance bill by $100.

The spokesman, who played President Palmer on 24, says that it might reduce accidents. It sounds like they are saying, we are out here having accidents on purpose, and if they up the offer, we will stop needlessly ramming other drivers out of our way.

One of the problems I had with Safety People when I was working in the construction field, was their delivery of the message. They approached us, the working class, as if we were out there looking for ways to hurt ourselves. I realize there are scam artists that will inflict injuries upon themselves in the hopes of a large settlement. However, the most of the work force are not out there trying to screw that insurance companies. I want to go home with the 10 fingers, 10 toes, 2 eyes and 2 ears, that I had when I arrived at work.

I am not driving to work looking for someone to hit with my truck while planning how I am gonna lose a finger or eye, so I can sit home and collect checks. I would just as soon work the rest of my life than get injured for a settlement.

I ran into the same attitude at times when I would be off work for short or long periods (depending on the time of the year and my desire to travel or not) and would sign up for unemployment compensation. The contractor for whom I was working, would pay into a fund, that would pay my compensation. None of the money came out of the pocket of the claims taker. I can understand how John Q Public might not be up to date on the governmental workings of unemployment compensation, but the workers at the UI office should be familiar with how it works. Still, every now and then, one of those spirited public employees would act as if they were going to have to take out their checkbook and write me a check every other week.

I am just a working stiff. I want to go to work. I want to do my job. I want to pay my bills. I want to keep just a little bit of my earnings.

What we have to deal with are insurance companies that treat us like we are trying to screw them, Government employees that treat us like we are robbing them, contractors that treat us like we are out to subvert their efforts, and general public employees that look at us with suspicion and mistrust. Everyone is not out to take you. everyone is not out to rip you off.

I have a theory (like this is a new thing) about how people treat others. The liar thinks everyone is lying to them. The thief thinks everyone is out to steal from him. The cheater thinks everyone is out to cheat him. We tend to see people through our own glasses. Our glasses alter our vision to see people as we see ourselves.

Tammy says I trust everyone. I see myself as trustworthy, for the most part. Therefore, I see people in a kindly light. This is not an advertisement for me. It is just who I am. I am not a saint. I am not an angel (though Tammy swears there are wings hidden somewhere).

Just treat me like you want to be treated. If you want respect, offer it. If you want trust, offer it. If you want kindness, offer it.

The Bible says, if we cast our bread on the water, it will return to us on ever wave, not many days hence, good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over. Kindness begets kindness. Gentleness begets gentleness. Anger begets anger. I know, the law of averages tells me, even if I give only kindness, I will reap some malice in some crop (law of wheat and tares), but, for the most part my life will be filled with kindness.

What you want, you have to give.

What do you want today?

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