At the local fruit & vegetable market last week, a woman reached forward and gently squeezed an avocado to assess its ripeness. Moments earlier I had done the exact same thing and decided it was too soft. I didn’t see the expression on her face, but possibly sensing her disapproval the market stall owner said “what the hell is it with you ****ing people? Last week everyone said they were too hard, so we got softer ones; this week everyone says they’re too soft. You’re never bleedin ‘appy, are you? Customers, honestly…” It was an unexpected barrage, and whilst not overtly aggressive, it appeared full of anger. Nothing further was said, and we all continued our shopping. Silently.
It’s easy to judge people. It’s easy to put people into pigeonholes. I could easily label the market seller as angry, unprofessional and probably in the wrong job. But what’s the point of judging if it’s based on guesswork? The easy route of making assumptions and not asking questions is guesswork. Sometimes you might be lucky and guess correctly. But the rest of the time you’ll be wrong.