If I tell you this story, please don’t judge me. Please don’t make an assessment about my overall character on this singular story, okay?
Remember: It was just a one-time thing.
I’m actually a very nice person (ask my mom). I have my flaws (who doesn’t?). My niceness should not be overshadowed by this particular occurrence.
I do plenty of nice things. Plenty (like, a lot). I do nice things almost every single day. I have taken the time to list them here (for your convenience, and reference).
Nice things Kim does almost every day:
– buying sandwiches for lonely truck drivers
– giving gently used clothing to charity
– putting pennies in “give a penny, take a penny” trays
– complimenting people after a haircut
– complimenting people after a teeth-whitening
– complimenting people after they have obviously been “toning up”
– hugging people when it’s obvious they need a hug
– laughing at people’s bad jokes (someone has to)
So, just because I wished harm on someone while flying over the Atlantic, it doesn’t mean that I’m a bad person, right?
Right? (I feel like you’re not totally in agreement with me here.)
Okay, I should explain.
I love Iceland. It’s so green and lush and volcanic and fun. In 2003 I had the opportunity to visit this Nordic gem of a country. It was my first trip to Europe and I can honestly say that it changed my life. I walked around with wide eyes… taking in the architecture, the geography, the people. I went to a grocery store in Reykjavik at 2 a.m. and the sun was still shining! I took a bath in geothermal waters! I ate a puffin!
(That’s the back-story. It’s important to know because it will give you some idea about why I wished harm on an ailing, old, Japanese man on a transcontinental flight.)
So, we’re flying from Los Angeles to London and I’m standing in the galley of the plane doing some light stretching (to avoid getting blood clots) and I overhear the flight attendants saying something about a man in seat 38B who was “not doing very well”.
And, of course I’m extremely sympathetic (but that’s just me – caring, compassionate, loving… and also: charming, vivacious, charismatic, resourceful, gracious, generous, kind, good-humored and humble).
Then I heard a flight attendant say that the pilot was determining whether the man’s condition was serious enough to make an emergency landing… and that we were very near Iceland.
I thought to myself… “Self, if the man was a teeny, tiny bit worse off, perhaps the pilot would determine that we should make an emergency landing in Iceland.”
So… (yeah)… I wished a little harm on him (just a teeny, tiny bit).
I mean, he was already “not doing very well”.
And sure, I had my own selfish reasons for wanting to make an emergency landing in Iceland (the Blue Lagoon, Skyr yogurt), but my genuine concern for the man’s health was definitely my primary motivation.
And, because the man’s health was my primary motivation, I wasn’t at all disappointed* when the man made a full recovery, and we landed at London Heathrow as scheduled.
*maybe just a teeny, tiny bit