Thursday, May 30, 2013

Rooster For Breakfast

My friend James has a saying:

Did that person have rooster for breakfast? Because they sure are being cocky.

That saying is particularly applicable today for two reasons. First of all, I have been on the LOW SUGAR VEGETARIAN DIET for a full week now. I have had some grilled fish and a little bit of chicken, but ultimately more fruits and veggies than meat. I’ve cut out most of the sugar, too, but that surprisingly isn’t nearly as hard as quitting meat.

So yeah, I’m feeling a little cocky when I proudly say that I have nearly given up meat and I haven’t killed or injured (or even threatened or kill or injure) anyone in the process.  

But that may not last long and brings us to the second reason I’m thinking about James’s saying today. At work, we’re at that “fun” time right before the term begins when students should have their accounts settled for Summer I. Normally that means a lot of frantic (and some rude) calls to our office. But yesterday and today it has meant an unusually high number of exceptionally rude and brutal calls to our office. 

I don’t actually answer the calls (THANK GOD), but I because of where my cubicle is, I get to hear them. It has become standard behavior for students and parents to call and insult and yell at the billing office when they can’t pay for the classes they signed up for. That’s kinda like buying a Honda then yelling at the bank that gave you the loan when they expect you to start paying for it. Ridiculous. 

Anyway, one parent called our employee stupid when she gave an answer that the parent didn’t like. (It was the correct answer.) Another student told us we were denying her human rights by not allowing her to run up her bill by enrolling in Summer classes, when she hadn’t finished paying for the previous term. (Going to college is a privilege, not a right.)  Too many complained about the expense. (If you think it’s too expensive, go somewhere else.) And I lost count of the ones that used obscenities.

These people have definitely been eating their rooster for breakfast. Sour, spoiled rooster. They aren’t just cocky in an arrogant, braggart kind of way. They’re cocky in an abusive, the-rules-don’t-apply-to-me kind of way. The worst part is that these people are in these unpleasant situations because of their own actions, or more likely, inaction. They’re mad at us when they should be mad at themselves. And I bet none of them have ever worked in a call center. 

I know that we all internally have that feeling of “I’m special. I’m different than everyone else.” It’s a healthy attitude to have. As an only child, I probably have it more than most. But that feeling or attitude should never make us act the way these people do. 

So, that brings me back to the whole “eating rooster for breakfast” thing.  I’ve said “I haven’t killed or injured (or even threatened or kill or injure) anyone in the process” of cutting out meat. I feel like there is an unspoken “yet” at the end of that sentence. Listening to those people makes we want to respond like those people. And that means that I need to give up one more thing. Sigh. No meat, no sugar, and now no more rooster for breakfast.

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