Cosi chronicles: Where’s the decency?

Photo on 2009-12-02 at 13.33

Am sitting in the corner table at Cosi. Had to clean the whole thing off, because the four teens sitting here before I arrived left a stinking mess.

Whenever I come here, I’m always dazzled by the lack of manners and decency possessed by many of the younger customers. They leave crap e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e, as if it’ll magically evaporate as soon as they leave. The inevitable—and heartbreaking—aftermath is that some guy working his ass off for $6.50 an hour has to wipe up the mess. It’s depressing, unfair and speaks to the class-money-social status divide in this country.

The other day I took my kids to the city for dinner and the Macy’s balloon blowing. There was a homeless guy on the train, asking for food or money. He was hard to look at—dressed in tatters, dirty, mangy. It was sad. I took my daughter’s snack bag from my backpack. It was filled with granola bars and Goldfish crackers and the like. When the man came by, I gave it to him—making sure Casey saw. She later asked me, “Why did you do that?” To which I replied, “Because that’s how you should treat people.” I’m not always so decent—I’ve certainly walked past my fair share of homeless individuals without offering so much as a glance. But the wife and I really want our kids to grow up not merely happy and healthy, but with a sense of compassion; of empathy.

Empathy means helping out a homeless dude.

But it also means cleaning up your shit …

4 thoughts on “Cosi chronicles: Where’s the decency?”

  1. “It’s depressing, unfair and speaks to the class-money-social status divide in this country.” I have to disagree. I think it speaks about what’s going on in the household. The parents are not teaching their children to respect what they have or themselves or to repesct others. Instead they are buying them brand new cars and $600.00 pocketbooks. It has to come from a good set morals and values which as a society we have brushed under the rug.

  2. I hit send too fast…I just want to add that people with no money don’t necessarily have good morals and values either. Parents just aren’t teaching it anymore. It’s not about status divide, it’s about moral divide.

    1. I actually don’t totally agree, Donna. We always tend to think, “Man, it’s not like it used to be”—no matter how old we are. There were crap parents when we were kids, crap parents 50 years ago, crap parents today. I do, however, believe that commercialism has taken a hold of society waaaay too much.

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