Quote of the Week

"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty councils."
- Woodrow Wilson

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Dogs and Little Kids Love Me; Cats and Women, Not So Much

That is something I often say about myself. People usually get a laugh from it, but it is really true. It’s just how I’m wired.

I’ve always been a dog lover and I think they know a human that likes them when they see one. I’ve seemed to always have a knack with kids. Especially kids under four, for one reason or another, I can almost always make them smile. Women on the other hand, I seem to have a way of driving them crazy. Cats, well, cats are cats. That’s pretty much way I’m the single guy with a dog.

This is my cousin's dog while I started writing this post. He was my guest the last few days.
The phrase came to me one time at some social function when I was being led by the hand of a two year old I hardly knew to go play. Someone said to me “you’re so good with kids, why don’t you have a family of your own?” The only thing I could think of to say was “dogs and little kids love me; cats and women, not so much.”

A while back I posted my little saying on Facebook, and many of my friends and family laughed, then agreed. My sister even half-jokingly pointed out that one of my ex-girlfriends may have been the real life Catwoman. 

Last weekend I was at a party for a friend of mine’s graduation. Those events are always kind of fun because there is a mix of people I know extremely well, people I know enough to say “hi” to, and complete strangers of all ages. While I was there, my personal saying was proved twice.

The first time I was sitting at a table in the garage, talking to family and friends. Out of the blue, the owners dog walk up to me, sat down and put its head on my lap. As I was scratching him behind his ears, the owner came up and said “that’s weird. He usually doesn’t come up to strangers like that.” It’s a gift I guess. A friend sitting next to me chuckled and said “if a dog is going to walk up to anyone, it’s going to be Shane.”

The second time happened while I was leaving. I was walking down the drive towards my truck and the same time another family was making its exit. They must have been heading home early to watching the Blackhawks vs. Bruins Stanley Cup Finals game too. 
I was walking past a little guy of around two holding a helium balloon. As I got alongside he looked at his balloon and looked up at me with the cutest grin. I stopped and said to the little bugger “you get to take home a balloon?” He stopped, smiled widely and enthusiastically shook his head yes. I smiled and said “lucky you! I didn’t get a balloon.”

The little guy frowned a little and looked down as if in deep thought. Then he looked up at me, smiled and handed me his balloon. My heart almost melted as I tried to convince the little guy to keep his balloon and I would be okay without it.

As I raced home to be in time for the opening faceoff, I was still smiling and thinking about the kindness the toddler showed to me. My theory on why little kids like me so much is because I make an effort to be kind and to interact with them. I think they respond to sincerity and respond to it positively because I seem to have a way to build trust with them quickly. Being young enough to not be lied to, cheated, or have their trust taken advantage of too much. Little kids seem more likely to return kindness with kindness.

I also strongly believe that same theory applied in reverse is why I have the opposite effect on women. They’ve been lied to, cheated, or have their trust taken advantage of so much; they see my sincerity as a threat. 

It’s either that, or I’m just simply childish.

It would be a much better world if we were all better judges of character. Be able to know right away who we can trust and who we couldn’t. Then we could act and treat each other more like toddlers, rather than like cats.

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