I so appreciate people who go out of their way to add beauty to the world. I admire artists and creatives who dedicate their lives to unveiling beauty in our world, but it’s not just them who make life beautiful. Perhaps it’s the neighbor planting flowers in their front yard or the person passing you on the street who decided to throw caution to the wind and wear a fun color that day. I actually think this might be part of the reason that so many people love Pinterest. There’s a longing for the beautiful because there is so much ugliness in the world.
All you have to do is ride the city bus to see that. No that’s not a commentary on the appearance of those who ride the bus. I believe everyone has something beautiful about them if you care to take a look. It is instead a commentary on how people behave.
I’ve noticed that riding a city bus on a daily basis brings out the
best worst in people. I view my time on the bus as something of a social experiment. Fifteen to twenty people (if you’re lucky) confined in one small (often times smelly) space for an undetermined amount of time (this is WMATA after all). All too often I find that my commute is full of individuals who throw elbows, make rude comments and generally appear at odds with the world around them. Those who are not, generally immerse themselves in a book or other distraction. Anything to shut out the world.
It’s caused me to draw one conclusion. Hurt people hurt people.
If you care to look deeper, the woman who lets out the dramatic sigh, accompanied by the eye roll and derogatory comment is perhaps commuting to her second job. A job necessary in order to make ends meet. Perhaps a by-product of the series of abandonments she’s experienced in life. The man who wreaks of alcohol and urine is perhaps dealing with his own rejection issues. Turning to solace with substance abuse while secretly yearning for the kindness of a smile. Perhaps the women whose petty argument dissolved in a fist fight on the bus (true story) were dealing with a root issue of value. Their fight erupting not because of a stolen seat but instead from the perspective of being unloved and under valued.
It is an ugly cycle and it is apparent from the world we live in that there are many, many hurting people.
That’s why I say that I appreciate those who make an effort to insert beauty into the equation. Yes, I understand that finely landscaped yard will not make up for life-long rejection and no, a brightly colored shirt isn’t going to help your loneliness. I only say this because I believe we can do our part to combat the cycle of ugliness. There are people in your world that need the beauty you can lend. Perhaps in a smile, a word of affirmation or even just a pop of color.
You may never paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel or even be able to find it for that matter (also a true story). You may never have your masterpiece hanging in the Smithsonian, but there is a beauty that you have to add to the world.
Think about it. What can you make beautiful today?
p.s. I LOVE this song. I could listen to it on repeat all day.