River Deep, Mountain High

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Feb 01 2012

Hold Hands Not Grudges?

For every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of happiness.”  ~Author Unknown

This post will be short- almost as short as my temper was when I discovered that my new phone had been “lost” by my local FedEx two weeks ago. Basically, I was finishing up a great week shortened due to the MLK Holiday. As I wrote about in a previous post, my school was visited by Bess the Book Bus, which provided over 4oo books to my school. However, two days later when I inquired why I had not received my package, which was indicated to have arrived in my town on the 13th, I was sketchily informed it had been “lost.” That was on the 19th. I was livid. I don’t get angry easily.

Now, I don’t intend to sound like a spoiled kid. But I already felt slighted by the forces of Capitalism that I needed to buy a phone in the first place. Throughout college, I was proud of myself for taking care of my phone for the two years necessary to get a discounted upgrade. I kept my Droid, despite its flaws, and we got along fine. However, this past summer, I wanted to reward myself for being frugal for so long and buy a new phone to help me become more productive. I bypassed the iPhone for a few reasons, namely their uncertain product roll out timeline. I soon became an unsuspecting owner of a Droid 3, which I’ll just say was so awful from the start that Motorola/Verizon already started marketing the Droid 4 to replace it until they acknowledged they’d tee’d off people like myself. Anyway, I held out until Christmas, when I gave my iPod Touch to my bro with the intention of getting an iPhone 4S…

Okay, I’m venting. Long story short: I tried to give the sketchy folks at Fed Ex the benefit of the doubt, but my multiple conversations with them at the location and on the phone were a waste of my time and I felt disrespected and let down as a customer. I don’t condemn all of Fed Ex, but I’m struggling with resentment towards our local branch. Am I wrong for wanting some sort of greater retribution than a replacement? Apple can afford to ship another one but I don’t have $400 Billion and I over two weeks of productivity and parent phone calls due to the mishap. Apple is still investigating since I contacted them when Fed Ex was unresponsive. Thanks to UPS, I have my phone now, but am I in the right to call upon the Better Business Bureau and whomever else can do something worthwhile with a form complaint?

Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.”  ~Malachy McCourt

Honestly, I think my bigger issue in all this is the feeling of helpless I got when I felt like I was constrained, couldn’t do anything, an had to rely on the competency (or lack thereof) of others. I’m tired of having to compensate for and suffer from the incompetence of others. Anyway, I agree with Lyman Abbott’s sentiment: “do not teach your children never to be angry; teach them how to be angry.”

Going forward, I’m less angry about my lack of compensation and more frustrated that my students live in an area where people steal like that. I’m careful not to over-generalize about people because of one (or a group) of workers errors / immorality. However, I can say that never happened to me in Maine or Massachusetts… again, it is not about what happened to me, and more about what will happen to my kids. They deserve better. Once more, I find myself at a crossroads. I’m angry, but I’m angry at the entire environment in addition to the specific situation.

“The world needs anger.  The world often continues to allow evil because it isn’t angry enough.”  ~Bede Jarrett

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    Remove Barriers, Raise the Bar

    Mississippi Delta
    Middle School

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