40. Those dead end roads again!
Hello again. You’ll never guess what I learned this week. It will make a big difference for me because even though I thought I was being respectful, I realized that I was not being kind when I told Morris that he was making too much noise. Mini heard me and saw the expression on Morris’ bumper bar. She asked me if I was aware of how my suggestion was heard. I did not know what she was talking about.
This is the story: Morris and the Double Devil Dragsters were making a huge rumble on Dragster Circle. Since I knew them all pretty well, I thought I could tell them what other cars were saying. I told Morris he needed to drive quietly and not blow air out of his muffler like that until he was on the Drag Track. That’s when he looked down, turned away and blew a puff of exhaust out of his muffler, aimed straight at me! I was mad, so I yelled some names at him.
Mini heard me and came over to me. “Do you know what road you are on right now? She asked. I took a big gulp of air through my intake valve and stuttered, “Whoops. Sorry Mini.” “You don’t have to apologize to me”, she said. “It’s Morris that you have hurt. Can you see that?”
I thought about it and then swallowed hard. I was on a dead-end road of criticism and I didn’t know what to do next. Mini went on, “If you are not sure if something you are about to say or do is thoughtful and kind, you can ask yourself three questions.
1. Is what I am going to say, helpful to me? to others? Or to the planet?
2. Is what I am going to say or do, going to bring me closer to others, or drive us apart?
3. What road do I want to take here? An open road or a dead end road”
I realized that my comment was not very polite and probably Morris thought I was being mean or disrespectful. So, I wanted to fix my mistake and heal our friendship. I decided to go down to the track and tell Morris how cool his new muffler is and how I valued our friendship. When I told him this, he said, “You are right about our friendship. I don’t want that to fall apart. I think I know now how much my loud exhaust was bothering people along the road. I will drive quietly until I am in the drag track and I can use the pressure of my muffler for strength and speed. I will be more careful on the Circle, and instead of making so much noise, I will invite everyone I see on the road to come down to the race track for a great show!”
Morris and I are still good friends. I think it is because I owned my disconnecting behaviour and explained more respectfully how important our relationship is to me. That was a big lesson for me. Have you ever thought about how to fix your mistake when you have been on a dead-end road? I now know the questions to ask myself. I think they are almost like the Magic Questions. I’m happier now that I have learned all of them.