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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

And Another Thing: Xenophobia

And another thing:
Take the bus.

If you get on one of these huge cars you'll be a part of the "green" movement, which is a good thing we learned last Sunday. There are other good reasons to do this.

You can save time, eat your breakfast on the way to work on the bus.

You can look around and see other people on the bus, notice the stress lines in their faces, fantasize about their lives, their feelings, their hopes and dreams. You can listen in on their phone conversations, especially when they use speaker. You can get OUTSIDE of yourself.

You can make new friends. My m-i-l is best friends with a bus driver who brings her presents when he goes away on vacation.

You can read.

You can look out the window, see more than traffic lights and cars, and not have to worry about driving defensively. There are all kinds of things to see on the right and on the left, houses and apartment buildings, ducks on lawns, laundry lines, kids playing pinners and tossing pennies (quarters).

You still might feel road rage, but I'll bet less of it, and you'll notice that as you suspected, people really do live differently from yourself.

For this exercise in empathy, you don't even have to go anywhere, you can just take a bus for the purpose of taking a bus, to ride. It's a great idea, seriously. When you're tired of the ride, you get off, cross the street,wait for another and go home. Or you can look around the neighborhood. Maybe be careful where you get off, come to think of it.

If you ride the bus often enough, you might lose your zenophobia if you've got it.

What's that? According to Wikipedia:

Xenophobia is a fear and contempt of foreigners. It comes from the Greek words ξένος (xenos), meaning "foreigner," "stranger," and φόβος (phobos), meaning "fear." The term is typically used to describe fear or dislike of foreigners or in general of people different from one's self. Racism is sometimes described as a form of xenophobia, but racism has nothing to do with a real phobia. Xenophobia implies knowledge that the target is in some way foreign. The term xenophilia is used for the opposite behavior, attraction to or love for foreign persons.


Copyright 2007, therapydoc


2 comments:

Curiosity.Killer said...

Wow. I like this green movement. But then again, I HAVE to forfeit my car anyway... living in downtown, inflated parking and gas.

Not to mention insurance.

I like taking the bus -- except the bodily odors. Wait.

Scratch that -- I like taking the subway more (underground train/MTR/Metro). Way more.

TherapyDoc said...

and if we want to be honest, C.K., in the summer it could get quite nasty.