Freedom of Speech

Conversations with myself.

“It wouldn’t hurt you to say ‘good morning,’ you know.”

“What?”

“That guy in the break room? Who said ‘good morning’?”

“He said ‘morning.’ Which it is.”

“You know what he meant.”

“I smiled.”

“You grimaced. A smile requires some teeth.”

“I don’t like to smile.”

“You’re weird.”

“Look, I don’t say good morning to people because it’s meaningless. For one thing, there are very few actual good mornings. Most of them are average mornings, some of them are terrible. The terrible ones are generally predicated on how many people say ‘good morning’ to you.”

“But….”

“Don’t get me wrong, I like mornings. Particularly early mornings when no one is around. It’s peaceful. It’s calm. It’s quiet. And breakfast is the most amazing meal ever invented. Seriously, breakfast is awesome. Bacon? All the bacon? And eggs, in so many varieties of preparation. And don’t even get me started on coffee.”

“I know you like….”

“Coffee is awesome! Coffee is, like, soooooooo good. Except when it’s bad, and then it’s angry-making. Because it can be soooooooo good. So why make bad coffee? Even worse, why sell bad coffee? How can someone stand behind a counter and pour a cup of bad coffee and then expect someone else to pay for it?”

“I think….”

“Money! Pay money for bad coffee! There ought to be a law!”

“Maybe you should round up a few friends and take over a federal building in Oregon.”

“I see what you did there.”

“My point is that it takes, what? Two seconds? Two fucking seconds? To wish someone else a good morning.”

“I know, but….”

“And as you’ve just pointed out, actual good mornings don’t occur very often, and maybe just saying that will help.”

“But….”

“And it’s not painful. And it’s not disingenuous. It’s rude not to do it! You’re being rude!”

“Look, the real reason I don’t want to say ‘good morning’ to someone is that it’s the appetizer to a meal I don’t want to have. Saying ‘good morning’ is shorthand for asking ‘how was your weekend?’ or ‘what did you do last night?’ or ‘have you seen Star Wars, yet?’”

“It doesn’t…”

“And for the record, no I fucking haven’t seen fucking Star Wars fucking yet so shut your motherfucking mouth!”

“Ah.”

“Fucking Rylo Ken or Kylo Ren or Ken Anbarbie or whatever the fuck his name is.”

“So you don’t know that Han….”

“Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!”

“Sorry.”

“Shut up!”

“Good morning.”

“Shut…good morning.”