I often have a hard time letting things roll off my back. I’m much, much better than I used to be, but sometimes I still get pulled into that trap. That’s kind of how I’m feeling right now.
One of our senior sergeants, I guy I really like, retired today. Retirement and promotion ceremonies can be a formal or relaxed as you want. This one was pretty formal. Several of the military folks were in their “Class A Uniform” (as apposed to the “Army Combat Uniform,” or ACU, I see them in every day). I was walking down the hall and saw the unit’s senior enlisted man, who was coordinating everything. I commented that I barely recognized him all dressed up. He said “Master Sergeant B’s retirement ceremony is today. I think he’d like it if you were there.” I was planning to go anyway, but this little comment made me smile. When people I admire accept and appreciate me, it makes me feel good.
One of the neat things some of the enlisted folks did was present the flag, very similarly to how the honor guards do it. I always love the folding of the flag, because I have special memories of it. My dad taught me how when I was around 10 or so & in the Girl Scouts. (And when he died, his coffin was draped with the flag, because he was a veteran. As the American Legion fellows were folding it, and the bugle was playing taps, I could see my dad sitting in his comfy chair, leaning forward, instructing me fold by fold.) This folding was very precise and as each fold was made, the emcee spoke of what each fold means. I’d never heard that before and it was quite interesting, if a bit dated.
But this afternoon, all I got was “I need your help” for things that aren’t my responsibility and beyond my control. The crowning moment came when I sent a request to my headquarters asking for some assistance. What came back was a snotty e-mail saying to look it up on Google. The guy then called to say he had Googled it and found the answer in 2 minutes. As I was driving home, I wondered why this irritated me so much and found the answer. If I had been in his shoes and found the information, I would have passed it on.
People often tell me I’m too nice. Maybe I am, but I’m not sure I could live with myself any other way.