Do as I say, not as I do.
I got to ‘know’ this phrase a long time ago and it was/is still used to depict hypocrisy at any level.
More often than not, what is good for the goose is hardly ever good for the gander.
Like the Leader who advocates for local content when ‘they’ themselves resort to ‘foreign’ content even to treat ‘common’ infections.
But I do not intend to write about any Leader or Country’s problems right now.
So we were stopped by a traffic light last week on our way home and as we waited on our own lane, there was ‘this’ Van on the right lane (we were on the left).
The driver was already hemmed in on both sides and I still do not know what got into him but he decided to wiggle out of his lane all of a sudden, by ‘reversing’ his van.
Mind you, there was just a teeny tiny space available to do that. The most logical thing to do would have been for him to wait until the light turned to green, allow the cars around him to move and free up space for him to proceed on his way.
This driver just kept expending his energy moving forwards and backwards repeatedly, trying to wiggle out until he eventually rammed into ‘my’ side (despite honking the horn a couple of times to ‘warn’ him).
“Jeez..See this idiot”
“You said we should not call people idiot!”
“Yes, you shouldn’t but ‘they’ bashed ‘us”, I defended myself weakly like a child caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
(A classic contradictory case of Do as I say, not as I do…or more aptly, do as I say, don’t do as I say)
“But that doesn’t mean you should call ‘them’ idiot since YOU said we should not do that”.
(To self: Egbami ke…better thank the heavens that I momentarily lost the password to Lagos drivers’ expletive database)
“Can’t you ‘even’ forgive the person?”
See me see trouble. ‘Forgive the person’ that did not even come down to see what he did (and apologize)?
By this time, the light had changed to green and ‘the person’ had driven off, without waiting to be
lambasted forgiven and completely oblivious of the court case going on on their account.
“See? They did not even stop to apologize for what they did”
‘But you should forgive people even if they do not apologize’.
‘Yes, that is what the bible says, that 70 x 7 times, we should forgive’.
*rolling my eyes*, seriously.
Now we’ve taken it 3 notches higher, bringing in the bible when all I wanted to do was to give the ‘basher‘ a piece of my mind on careful driving, patience and the use of rear mirrors.
‘Yes, you’re right…we should forgive anyone who offends us..it is not ‘really’ right to rain abuses on people, Okay?’
That is what I would have them internalize right now, the lines would be drawn in time as appropriate but they really got me there. And it took me back, briefly to this other time when I forgot to walk the talk although the scenarios are not the same.
Isn’t that what we mostly preach and teach these young ones?
At least that is what I do. So why do I find it difficult to do as I say they should do?
I know the answer..it was simply not ‘convenient’ for me at the time to eschew aggression and overlook that man’s misdeed. I guess it is safe to say that yours truly is truly part of the problem.
Truth is, 90% of the time, I don’t even take my own advice, not deliberately though. I mean, how am I supposed to smile and say thank you to someone who just rammed into my side and drove off without even batting an eyelid?
Maybe if they had waited or even realized what they did and apologized, I might have invited them to brush the other side of the car and then graciously pin a thank you medal on them while I ring up the Insurance people to pick the tabs.
The point is, we do what is convenient for us per time. Every single one of us, leaders and followers alike and when we are caught in the act, we forget what we preach.
It is ‘humanly natural’.
I might just add more to my ‘humanly natural list’ by trying to be on my guard and checking constantly with my imaginary list even when no pair of little eyes are around to throw my sh*t back in my face.
They do the teaching, most of the time, I swear.
And I don’t usually swear.