Saturday, March 05, 2016

“...that's not what I heard.”

An interesting thing happened this week. I noticed that one of my close friends was acting a bit stand-offish and it bothered me. When I asked her about it she was hesitant and then explained that she didn't like what I said about a mutual friend. I was very surprised because I thought I was always supportive and complimentary about that person. After a good discussion we both came to realize that what I said was not what she heard and we realized how important it is to be specific and clear when communicating with others.

It reminded me of the story about the man driving a big open truck with the back filled to overflowing with penguins. He was stopped by a policeman who explained that this was illegal. He said he wouldn't give the driver a ticket but that he needed to take the penguins to the zoo immediately. The driver thanked him and drove off.

Two days later the policeman was astonished to see the same man with the same truck and, once again, it was filled to over-flowing with penguins. The only difference was that all the little birds were sporting sun glasses ! The policeman stopped the truck and in an angry voice he told the driver that this time he was getting a ticket and that he'd better obey him or he'd get jail time too.

The driver looked very confused and in a trembling voice he said, “But, officer, I did do what you told me. First I took them to the zoo … and now we're going to the beach!!”


Blogger Marie Smith said...

Lol! Great point! It always helps to talk things over!

5:18 PM  
Blogger possum said...

How wonderful that you got that straightened out. So many times we misunderstand things, or worse, buy into gossip and avoid people or get angry when there is no real truth in what we are thinking.
Good for you, Ginnie. And good for your friend that you worked things out!

4:41 AM  
Blogger Marie Smith said...

Ginnie, a blog I follow by John at wrote about Sylvia Plath today in a piece called stuff and nonsense. I wrote him about your piece and gave him your blog address too. Marie

5:40 AM  
Blogger NCmountainwoman said...

So glad you asked your friend what was bothering her. Far too often we neglect to do that and the misunderstanding leads to a loss of a good friend. Loved the penguin story.

7:28 AM  
Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

I sometimes even miss the mark when writing. Had to laugh at the penguins:)) Truly made your point.

10:19 AM  
Blogger troutbirder said...

I specialize in this kind of miscommunication. Just ask my wife...:)

5:50 PM  
Blogger joared said...

Good that your friend was willing to clarify the situation with you. Hope the penguins didn't get locked up!

3:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mishearing is a way of life around here and I am sometimes as angry as that cop.

8:39 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Communication is fraught with difficulty.

5:12 AM  

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