I Can’t Stay Mad at You
Do you hold grudges or do you believe in forgive and forget?
To err is human, to forgive divine. Or so they say, and I’ve never seen much reason to argue. In fact I find it a rather comforting reassurance that I’m not the only one capable of filling my mouth with feet and blundering through the garden of other people’s sensibilities.
We all make mistakes, even those who think they’re above, beyond or otherwise exempt from such common-or-garden human frailty, god bless their little cotton socks. The most important thing is that we admit them and learn from them. In which case, forgiveness isn’t really an issue; it’s more a matter of accept, learn and move on. Unless your mistake was of the particularly heinous variety that casts doubt on your moral probity, or unless the victim of your mistake is particularly spiteful and/or self-righteous and wants your guts for garters anyway. I always feel extremely sorry for people like surgeons and airline pilots, whose margin for human error in today’s litigious society is minus ten – although my sympathy doesn’t extend to the captain of the Korean ferry who scrambled (trouserless) to safety as it sank, leaving hundreds trapped inside. That’s not a mistake, that’s failure to take the responsibility you accepted when you took the job in the job in the first place.
The people I find hardest to accept are those who ride roughshod over others with no sensitivity, no apology and no intention of changing their ways: those who act out of malice, arrogance, or self-centredness so complete their own satisfaction is all that matters. But since I’ve never entertained delusions of divinity, I don’t consider it’s my job to forgive these people. I bear them no active ill will, but I want them out of my life.
And if that’s bearing a grudge, then yes, I find me guilty of a couple. Or maybe three.