07 December 2013

First World Problems - A Perspective

It's been a week of First World Problems. For those of you who are unaware of the nature of these tragic incidents, well, you then are a well-adjusted person with perspective. Then there's the rest of us. Here's a sample of my run-in with First World Problems this past week:

  • Tragic Incident #1: I had to go into New York City Sunday night on the busiest travel day of the year. Amtrak was packed, as in standing room only packed, and the free Wi-Fi was not working for the entire three hour trip.
  • Tragic Incident #2: On Tuesday, I had a six-hour westbound transcon nonstop on Mother United on an ancient sub-United 757 that was NOT equipped with Wi-Fi
  • Tragic Incident #3: My room at the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey had an awesome view but I was in a conference room for 12 hours and I could not enjoy said view.
  • Tragic Incident #4: See Tragic Incident #2 but on Wednesday, it was reversed - now it was the eastbound flight
  • Tragic Incident #5: Last night, after an evening of taking care of some Christmas shopping, the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML and I decided to stop at our local purveyor of craptastic donuts, Dunkin Donuts, for a tasty, and mostly lethal, treat. There was not a donut, muffin, or that little death delivery system, the Munchkin, to be had. The staff had just thrown Every.Single.One out. Apparently, it was the end of their day. Two things - on what planet is the DD not open all day/all night with at least one homeless guy acting as door greeter? Um, that would be in our neck of Connecticutistan. Apparently that's not allowed here (Curse you, Martha Stewart!). Two - DD, how about donating your excess crap? Surely there are plenty of agencies that could take your excess inventory for the needs they have in providing breakfast, etc. Just a thought....
Such is the nature of First World Problems. They are ridiculous. And I hope you've picked up on my sense of sarcasm/snark. If you haven't, oh dear...There are much more pressing and real issues in this world than the lack of free wi-fi and donuts, like the loss of a hero of freedom and hope.

Nelson Mandela died earlier this week. His impact on the world is immeasurable, as it affected nations, policies, and people, from the highest of leaders to the impoverished slum dweller. I know he changed my world view and I am grateful for that. There is so much more to this life than our silly First World Problems. We can, each one of us, make a difference in this world. I love what Mr. Mandela said here:
Thank you, Mr. Mandela.

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