We can’t help ourselves. It is built into our DNA. We constantly judge people and make decisions about whom they are. But appearances can be deceiving.
Many years ago I was working at our location in Lansingburgh. I was a night shiftleader and worked as many hours as I could get scheduled. Friday and Saturday nights were long shifts because we closed at 5am. I liked those shifts because the hours added up so quickly. You also got to see all sorts of people. Many that you would only shake your head at and wonder. Some that you were glad that you were standing behind a 4 foot counter and did not run into on a dark street corner. There was one in particular that I remember. He was a big man. A biker. He belonged to the Hell’s Angels. He was quiet and had tattoos across his knuckles. On one hand it said, “HATE”. On the other hand it said, “LOVE”. It certainly got my attention and I knew that I didn’t want either stamped on me.
I worked with a young blond girl who got a lot of attention from the guys. She took it in stride and was able to make sure most of them behaved. One particular night I remember it started getting extremely loud in the store and I looked over and saw a couple of guys giving this young lady a hard time. She was getting flustered and as I finished up with the customer I was waiting on I turned to go help her. Before I could take a step I saw our Hell’s Angel’s friend quietly step behind these guys, grab a hold of their shirts behind their necks and lift them both off the floor. It got really quiet.
In a gentle voice he as he turned both of them to look at him he said,
“Gentlemen. I would suggest you treat this lady with a bit of respect”
He gently set them back on the floor and they immediately apologized to my co-worker.
I am a believer that people are genuinely good. Take a moment to see the real person before you judge them by their appearance.