I have never been the sort of personality that hides behind a fake smile- I never was much of a poker player either- the glee or gall of my hand would be written all over my face. My brothers and Dad took full advantage of my meager coinage.
Is it so hard to believe in a fellow traveler...that we don't all have some kind of hidden agenda, just at the ready to pounce on a kind soul? I think people do mistake kindness at times for weakness...although it's not the worst thing in the world to be underestimated.
Sometimes, when I get my back up- I speak quick and hard to certain reptilian personalities. Not to reprimand them, but to make them think, OK...maybe sometimes I do correct, but with good intentions. Like yesterday for instance, after trying to make my exit from a local gas station. I held the door for a kindly old man; My- the smile he gave me...it was like an embrace from a ray of sunshine! Standing there in that glow, another able bodied couple walked in- no problem, I was still basking. Then a younger fellow grabbed the door, bustled in through the couple, knocking into the old man. And then spoke none too kindly to the group at hand. I am a mother. Children grown, but that kind of behavior might make me grab an ear or two and haul their little rumps front and center and call them on it.
Anyway- I put a headlock of words on the young asshole, 'scuse my French. Not many syllables were needed, just this-
"Shame on you."
I won't credit him one bit with what his lack of brain power mumbled.
I stood hard and fast, echoing my original statement.
"Shame on you."
By Jesus I must have put the fear of God in him...or maybe it was the trucker dude behind me, backing me up. (Ain't it great when people do get involved, not by force but merely stance?!)
I do believe the misguided kid was actually shamed, maybe sorry even...not by what I said but by the fact that all eyes were upon him, no cursing was directed at him...just folks holding him accountable for HIS actions.
Anyway, small victories on the part of good manners is worth a chunk of chocolate. Which I bought. And ate. It tasted sweeter somehow...