Sun | Oct 22, 2017

Kelly's World | A case for meanness

Published:Monday | September 18, 2017 | 12:09 AM

"Yuh too mean!" is one of the most damning statements on a person's character you can hear.

Considering that as human beings we all have to reside on this planet, the least we can do is help make life more comfortable for each other.

And in my 36-plus years, I've seen even the grumpiest of persons give something away for no benefit to themselves at some point.

It's just how we're made up. So when someone can call another mean, that's not good.

Here's the thing, though. I think there is a case for meanness, depending on the situation.

For instance, some men will give a woman (literally) his last dollar. But then when he's into a bind financially, he's on his own.

If you've got two children and your neighbour has five, are you really expected to give her lunch money or snacks for children, if the two of you are in the same economic situation?

Some people tek kindness to another level, though. Forget about giving the shirt off their back, some people will give the pants off a dem leg, di shoes off a dem foot and anything between deh so and dem head.

Now don't get me wrong. At some point in our journey through life, we need somebody to go the extra mile for us.

But as one former manager at this company once told me, you have to be frugal.

So how do you be a little mean, without being a 'meanie'?

 

HOW TO BE A LITTLE MEAN

 

Well, first things first. Make sure you can actually do without whatever it is you plan on giving away.

So if you have one pair of shoes, obviously, you can't lend yuh bredren fi a job interview in case yuh nuh get it back in time for your job.

Even if you have two pairs, I wouldn't recommend it because anything can happen. On the day he goes with one pair, that's the day your other pair, aka the one you're wearing, decide fi start beg bread.

Tactic number two, give to who really, and I mean really, need it.

Now this one is a little tricky because of how dramatic some people can be at even the faintest sign of misfortune.

For instance, some man wi have a flat tyre pon dem car and yuh think a buss di radiator buss di way how dem a bawl!

So to ascertain the level of need of the begging party, some investigation will be needed.

Think of it like when the financial services people dem investigate alleged non-profit organisations to make sure they actually are non-profit.

Third tactic, have a preference system. Like I said, at some point in life, we all need someone to go the extra mile.

But unless you have deep pockets like a billionaire, you have to have a preference system.

So family and very close friends get first. And even among those two groups, it's usually mommy and daddy first (depending on your relationship with yours).

So there you go, hope I've been of help (pun intended). Now go forth and be a (nice) meanie.

- Link me at daviot.kelly@gleanerjm.com