Just so it’s abundantly clear: I have a fairly cynical side. Perhaps coupled with a kind of social impatience that lurks in the back of my mind. I just think certain interactions are far too longed out. It would do us all a favour if we popularised a notion of social interactional efficiency.
I hear conversations that always go to the effect of:
Person 1: So we have to go in through the front door
Person 2: So we can’t go in through the side?
Well yes. That’s what go in through the front door means. It eliminates all other possible ways to enter the place. Another reaction is person 2 says:
“Oh I thought we could go in through the side”
Sorry what? Who cares if that’s what you previously thought? It’s not longer the case. Please keep that as an internal dialogue as you correct and update the information in your own mind.
Now I understand how this may come across to some of you. Like I’m the grammar nazi’s cousin, a social interaction nazi. But look out for those types of interactions.
So what’s this got to do with the Coronavirus? Well, a new culture has emerged. The feel good, community spirit, we’re all here for each other culture. And of course it’s lovely to see and heart warming to witness the community coming together blah blah.
But at a time of crisis, who really has time for empty words.
“Stay safe!” Oh thanks mate. Changed my life. Was planning to put myself in danger actually. Thank goodness you came through with that advice.
“Look after yourself!” This one confuses me. Is this an order to not let anyone else look after me? Which I would respect more than the empty semantics it actually represents. Once again, cheers buddy. Wasn’t going to look after myself until you told me that. In fact, I was going to go out of my way to cause detriment to myself.
“Let me know if you need anything” Well, that’s actually quite a nice offer so thank you.
“Get well soon!” Thanks for this instructional masterpiece. Just thanks.
In all seriousness, I understand that this is the cultural norm for expressing good will to others. I get it, and truly it is a well intentioned and admirable thing.
But to my fellow Muslims, I request a dua instead of words. Your prayer might actually work, whereas your words will most likely just irritate me. I used to think it was cringe, probably when I was a SUPER WOKE Muslim, but having the name of Allah mentioned in everyday conversation, and having dua made brother to brother over the smallest thing, is a way for us to remain God conscious, and have our hearts at ease with the remembrance of God.