Tuesday, March 26, 2013

564. Judging a book by its cover

Recently I attended a wedding reception of a cousin of mine in Chennai. My relatives had come to the  wedding. It is at one such place we get to meet all our relatives in one place. I happily went around and greeted all my uncles, aunties, grannies, nieces, nephews and cousins. 

After sometime the conversation started. It was the usual gossip on who is pregnant in the family, who is having marital problems in the family, the in-law problems, the affairs , who eloped with whom and the conversation just skipped from one topic to another. 

Suddenly a cousin of mine entered the scene and every one became silent. The reason being they had just gossiped about him. To our surprise he was very cordial with everyone and the manner in which he behaved with all of us simply proved that what ever that was spoken of him was not true. 

The oldies in the family had labelled him as a drug addict, just because he has long hair. This is how they form opinions. Just because one has long hair, you can't label that person as a druggie. Just because a person's eyes are red, you can't call him a drunkard. In fact I used to have long hair once.

Sometimes the opinions we form about people doesn't determine who they are. It just shows who we are. I have worked in the advertising industry for sometime as a Client servicing executive. Almost all the women at work had the habit of smoking. When we had official parties, they drink a lot too. A friend of mine once said that a girl who smokes is a slut. But I have seen these ladies to be morally very good. They never crossed their limits in relationships.

I am not supporting smoking or drinking in any way. I am pretty sure that both are not good for health. I have been there and I know it does not help you in any way. But the point I am trying to make here is that we can never call a person cheap because of his or her habits. These are just habits which can leave a person anytime. But a character of a person (jealousy, pride, lust, ego,lies) are more dangerous than the habits that a person has.

We were talking with our neighbors near our house entrance when a guy vroomed past us in his bike. His silencer was tuned in such a way that it created lot of noise. As soon as he zoomed past us, my neighbor immediately blurted out "Kudikaaran! Poraan paaru" (See! How there goes a drunkard). She immediately labelled him as a drunkard just by hearing the silencer tone of his bike.

How many times have we jumped to conclusions. When we look at a person, we tend to draw a picture of the person in our mind and there are occasions when we label a person as a worthless creature even before the person could have a say.

When Landau Eugene auditioned for a competition to showcase his talent, the judges mocked at him. His social status and the way he carried himself made the judges to think that he was a nutcase. But the moment he opened his mouth to sing, he silenced the judges with his voice.

In today's world, everybody are taught to carry themselves very well. In most of etiquette training sessions, the trainer always forces the trainees not to be themselves; but to be someone whom others will accept. Everyone are taught to throw attitude. 

But in the attitude era, there are still simple creatures who come to the stage without any glamour and they just take the world by storm. Asif Ali is one such person. The judges sarcastically took him for a ride by insulting him for his mannerisms. This guy knocked them when he started to sing.

Similarly we would have seen the story of Susan Boyle and Kevin Skinner too.

When you see someone who doesn't carry himself well, please  don't underestimate the person. Encourage him and try to bring the best out of him. Our sarcastic insults can kill the greatest talents around us.

The only thing that one has to do behind a back of a person is "Pat his back"



  1. Good post Chris. Labelling is very easy today and the labels tend to get stuck

  2. Good article. You have given a wonderful explanation for character and habit, how they both differ from each other. :)

  3. Nice.... u simply say it as it is.


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