Pick up a copy of “The 1988 Dodgers” today!

Order The 1988 Dodgers: Reliving the Championship Season

Print Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Respect

I don’t think it’s okay to ignore people. Isn’t that a form of bullying?

I will still help people, but these experiences that I’ve had are certainly not pleasant. We’ve all been helped. We’ve all helped people. I think what we want in return is respect. I’m going to share this particular incident, this situation that happened to me. Actually, two. 

First up: Let’s call this person J. The letter J. You know, on an earlier episode of my podcast, I referenced someone as the letter D. No names, just letters. So, I’m going to call this next person “J.” The letter J.

Let me begin the story from the time when J asked me to write her a reference letter. I asked “when?” She said “this week.” So, I wrote up a reference letter that same day and gave it to her. (According to her, she was looking for a part-time job or simply a full-time opportunity elsewhere.) She told me not to tell the other staff that we hung out. Which is, okay, whatever. A few days later, she left some chicken rice in the fridge at work, and she texted me to deliver it to her after I was done that day (her home is nearby). Again, she told me not to tell the other staff that I was bringing her stuff to her.

But then shortly after I wrote that reference letter and gave it to her (it was several weeks later), she just stopped talking to me. It was, to me, like, okay, KP is no longer useful, so there’s no more need to interact with KP. I find that to be a bit disrespectful. And it was obvious. I always leave my classroom door open. It’s because these classrooms in the places where I teach, there are no windows or no windows that open. So I leave the door open because I don’t want to feel like I’m in prison. Symbolically, it’s also to say that my door is always open and anybody can come in and talk to me about anything. 

So J would walk past my room without saying hi. But J would say hi to virtually everyone else. It’s obvious. Now, the sports media and sports fans would crucify Barry Bonds for ignoring his teammates. So, shouldn’t we do the same to regular people around us? It’s totally disrespectful. Again, it’s like, after I do a favour by writing a reference letter and that’s done, it feels like there’s no need to interact with me anymore. And there was that telling comment: Don’t tell the other staff etc. that we hung out. 

You can interpret that in different ways. 

So I sent a text and asked if I had offended J, and if so, I would like to apologize, but I did notice that J has stopped saying hello. 

The response was typical:

Hahaha what! I say hi to you all the time KP??? Like every day I say hi to you!!!   

That last statement was definitely not true. Just stop. Don’t insult my intelligence.

And there was no apology. I was the one who apologized for even mentioning that. 

But another very telling incident was shortly after that, a week after that…

Let’s call it a work-related matter. She was asked by the school to assist me with something. We did not have to work together on anything; it was just a matter of J assisting me with something. 

J and I had a brief in-person conversation and then I said I would email her the game plan. I did so a few minutes later, sent it by email and texted her about it. I notice she was still at the front desk talking to admin. I wanted to just verbally let her know that I had emailed her the game plan. So I came out of my room to say “Hey, J. I wanted to —”   As soon as J saw me, she put her earphones in her ears and said “Bye” and walked out the door to go home. That is totally disrespectful. 

Isn’t that passive aggressive? You spent so much time talking to admin and as soon as I come out and said, “hey J,” you walk out. That’s a very bad look. So, be that way. And besides, I wanted to talk about a work matter.

From my perspective, J comes across as being fake.

I intend to re-tell this story on my podcast with Stan Markotich. This is a learning opportunity for our students and our younger listeners. Don’t treat people this way. Don’t take it if someone does this to you. 

I will still help people. But you come to realize people have an agenda. It’s not good to say that, but that’s true. It’s one thing if we had never hung out or if never talked to each other beforehand, but the fact is we did hang out before outside of work and we did talk to each other and I was always cordial with her, and I did help her before with the favour, so I would expect to receive a bit more respect. I mean, for me, if someone has a problem with you, talk about it. I tried talking about it and was laughed at, with that Hahaha what? I say hi to you all the time KP like every day I say hi to you.  

You move on. But that person was disrespectful. But hey, I’m not a lesser person than anybody else. I’m not a non-person. You just don’t act that way to me. Nobody owes me anything. But respect is important. You just don’t treat someone who helped you out before like that.

You can at least say, “Sorry, I have to run right now. Let me text you.” But there was no apology, just a “Bye” and walk out the door. Earphones in ears like she wasn’t interested in what I had to say. That’s a bad look. I don’t like being used. I don’t like being treated like a pawn. Nobody does. Be respectful. 

Then, here’s another person. This is a second story—at a different workplace. I worked from home for a while because of the pandemic. Then I went back to work, in person. The online class that I was teaching, it got transferred to another instructor, whom I’ll call “E.” 

I got assigned a brand new in-person class. E inherited my original class but E would teach at school using a computer while the students studied from home online. Basically an online class but E teaches from the school.

I tried to give E some information about those students because I knew them and E didn’t know them. They were new to E. 

When I gave him some information about students that he was inheriting (I called this my “scouting report” because we both follow sports), he said, “I don’t do scouting reports. I do it based on my interactions with them. But thanks.”

Why not just say, “Thank you, I’ll look at it” — or something like, “Thanks, I’ll hang on to it just in case”?

The next day I wanted to say hello to my former students, he said, “No, they’re on break.” I said again that I just wanted to say hello to them (in case some were still at their desk), and he repeated, “No, they’re on break.” 

Why be a jerk? And he wasn’t joking around. He was stiff in his answer. This is someone who has taught in South America and in Asia. He has decades of experience. We’re talking about an educated person. Yet he treats fellow instructors like this? 

And then I could hear his lesson from next door because the walls are thin. He was mispronouncing a student’s name so I wrote a note and slipped it under his door. I also emailed him to say, “Hey FYI E, the student’s name is pronounced [blah blah], and not the way you say it, but I think the student is too polite to correct you.” There was no acknowledgment from E. 

The following week, I could still hear E mispronouncing that student’s name. That teacher also doesn’t talk to me anymore.

E is simply not respectful. This is the same person who was rude another time. During the first summer of the pandemic, I started a podcast. (This podcast.) I let E know about this and said, “Hey, can you check this out? It’s my new podcast.” 

His response: “I listen only to Tim & Sid.” Why be like that? 

There was no “Good luck with it. Hope it works out great.”  It was just “I listen only to Tim & Sid.” (Note: Tim & Sid was a sports talk show hosted by Tim Micallef and Sid Seixeiro between 2011 and 2021, and its current name is Tim & Friends.)

Some time prior to that, he had asked me to help him secure some freelance work and I did help him out with some contacts and i gave him glowing references. Again, I was fine doing that. We’ve all been helped before and we’ll all helped others. What we all want in return is respect. But E is certainly disrespectful. You don’t treat people like that. 

Here’s the thing. He thinks he’s seen the world and knows all there is to know and doesn’t acknowledge other people’s feedback. Again I used to respect him and, as mentioned, I gave him a glowing review, a glowing reference, but his actions are just not okay and he’s disrespectful. 

So, you have both people — J and E — who don’t say hello anymore and don’t apologize. Just blatantly rude. One just puts on her earphones and says “Bye” and walks out the door. The other is just plain rude. So, once again, these people whom I’ve helped — they treat me like I’m a non-person, a lesser person. That’s fine. I’ll still help other people in the future. 

As for people such as J and E, to me they are terrorists. After all, if you are not on my team, you are against me. Does this sound like an exaggeration and disrespectful? Well, consider this: There was a movie produced in 2015 called The Intern, where Anne Hathaway referred to her mother as a terrorist. If this word is being used in this way in pop culture, I consider it fair game and will indeed label those against me as terrorists. Disrespectful terrorists.

Advertisement

Another personal reflection: Sept. 23, 2022

September 23, 2022 (Friday)

Today was another day when my older sibling treated me as persona non grata… even though she owes me several hundred dollars and mostly only is friendly to me when she needs a loan. 

Add to the fact that I purchased a home and my older sibling has done nothing to help me in the process.

On Labour Day long weekend, yes, she drove me and a chair and a few small boxes from my current home to the new home — but she charged me $75 for that. (I paid her $77.77.) It was not a pleasant ride. Almost every time I’ve been in the same car as her (with her driving), she’s swearing at other drivers and cursing them for driving too slowly and being stupid drivers. It’s never a comfortable ride because there’s a lot of stress. I’d rather pay a taxi driver or Lyft driver to get from Point A to Point B and ride in peace. But this time I wanted to move a chair and a few boxes, and she “offered” this for $75. 

In talking with peers and bosses, I’ve been told that they would never charge me any money for driving me somewhere.

So, think about that for a moment. 

Again, today I’ve been treated as persona non grata and there is no remorse whatsoever shown by my older sibling. 

One more thing is her constant dishonesty. I have not moved into the new place yet but have gone in periodically to move things in. I would notice my older sibling’s belongings in the new place (she has keys and she moved those things in herself without offering to help our elderly mother or me). I commented then, “So, I see you moved things in within the last couple of days,” to which she would respond that I was mistaken because she moved those things in the same day that she drove me (for that $75 offer). 

What’s the point of lying? I wasn’t picking on my older sibling for moving her things in on her own. But she chooses to just lie with a straight face. It’s like, okay, and I’ve told her before that she’s just like “the boy who cried wolf.” How do I know when she’s telling the truth or when to take her seriously?

Her response: I was mistaken because that stuff was moved in the same day she drove me.

That happened during one of the days when I wasn’t treated as persona non grata. 

Speaking of which, my older sibling treats our elderly mother as persona non grata, openly calling her “the bitch.” On that same day she drove me to that place, she commented that she was taking one of the storage areas and staking her claim “before the bitch hogs it.” 

Here we have a situation in which my older sibling has not done anything to help out and is treating the place as her own—even though our mother paid for part of the down payment. My older sibling has not made any payment and instead has:

  • asked me for money constantly (I said no a few times but lent her money other times)
  • insulted me constantly during this entire process of searching for the home (calling me “stupid” for looking at places in the suburbs instead of Vancouver—even though I was seeking those places since they are more affordable as I was—and am—not getting other support, and none from her, while looking for places that had an extra room so she could live there).

So, I can say with good conscience that I have done my older sibling no wrong but she has chosen to be the way she is. 

I am “stupid” indeed

I am “stupid.”

During the process of purchasing my home, I was insulted several times — multiple, multiple times — by my older sibling because I was looking for properties not in Vancouver but in the suburbs of New Westminster and Richmond. I was “stupid,” in her words, because those places are too far from Vancouver. It was inconvenient for her to commute. 

During this process, I was not supported with any encouragement or kind words. I was not supported with any funding. Instead, it was insult after insult after insult — and she was even borrowing money from me periodically — and when I wasn’t needed, I was treated as persona non grata and ignored like I’m a non-person. 

What’s lost was the fact that I couldn’t afford a place in Vancouver, and the fact that I was looking for properties with two bedrooms so that she could also live there. Properties with two bedrooms (so that she could also live there) cost a lot more in Vancouver.

Sure, I am “stupid” — my peers have told me I should have just cut my sibling out of my life. I am “stupid” indeed for being protective of her and supportive of her despite her lack of respect for me and her constant negativity during this entire home purchase process. 

I am “stupid.”

The Life of a Writer, Part 2

So, I worked for a local major midget hockey team last winter, and I wrote recaps for their games on their website.

The local Richmond News ripped one of my stories off, taking my story verbatim except for a few words, without crediting the team and me. When I reached out, the response was snotty.

When I contacted the Canadian Media Council to complain about this situation — after all, in the current 24/7 media cycle, even if it’s just about a local midget hockey team, “ASAP” implies providing a solution immediately — the response was also not satisfactory.

The takeaway: It’s okay to plagiarize??

I’m no longer a person – again

Once again, I’m back to being a non-person.

This is such a regular occurrence that I shouldn’t even bat an eye when it happens – again.

I have an older sibling who’s four years my senior. Just last Saturday, my sibling was buttering me up when wanting to borrow some cash for lunch (because that place is a cash-only establishment). I loaned the money and I was paid back later. No big deal. My sibling also wanted to borrow even more money, but I declined.

Interestingly, the next day, my sibling was no longer speaking to me – again. I don’t know what I had done wrong this time, but I mean, I’m again no longer a person. I’m back to being persona non grata. As I type this, it’s Wednesday night, meaning it’s been four days now of this silent treatment. I’m back to being invisible.

So, really, it’s nothing unusual because that’s how it seems with many people in society. When they want something, they butter you up. And when you’re no longer needed (this time), you’re kicked to the curb.

Just the other day, someone asked me rhetorically if I felt I was “childish” because I have a toy collection at home. I chose not to answer the question.

But being “childish”? I can say that the passive-aggressive approach employed by my sibling would count as that. And it is passive-aggressive behaviour, that’s for sure. There’s tension which can be felt. Yes, I’ve experienced this type of treatment from both my sibling and my father repeatedly over the years, so it shouldn’t affect me.

But I’m not a machine. I’m not AI. I’m not a robot. I’m a human being. A person.

Except when I’m treated like I’m not. Like I’m a non-person.

Now, when I was younger, did I ignore people? Yes, I often did in school. That was a time when I was extremely shy and afraid of talking to people. Did I offend anyone then? Yes, I’m sure I did. But again, at the time I was extremely afraid of talking to people.

When you’re older, you change. But some people don’t. I used to work at this school where there were two instructors who were like that. Now, keep in mind that we’re talking about grown adults who are educators. Let that sink in for a moment.

I was new at that school at the time. I said “Hi” to a math teacher whom I came across in the hallway. He stared at me without a word. Eventually, he returned the favour by saying “Hi” back, but the first few times were awkward. Then, there was this other teacher named Cicy. I said “Hi” when coming across her in the hallway. I was ignored. It happened a few times. Another time I was approaching the school building and saw her coming in my direction. I said “Hello” and was ignored.

Now, this Cicy was not shy because I’d seen her yapping it up with the school administrators and other teachers. So, I guess the question is this: Am I too much of a loser that people – in this case, Cicy – just don’t want to talk to? Again, let that one sink in for a moment: We’re talking about a grown adult who happens to be an educator. So, here’s yet another reason that I think teachers are overrated.

If this particular teacher had any issue with me, let’s discuss it. But this passive-aggressive nonsense is just silly. I often joked to myself that the “C” in the name of the school stood for “Clique” – It’s like this Cicy still thought she was in high school.

One time, I was told by a student who was from the same ethnicity with Cicy and the math teacher that in their country, if someone randomly said “Hi,” they would just walk away and thought the speaker was weird. Well, that’s fine. But hello? We’re in Canada. Besides, if you’re an educator and you’re behaving like that, well, I have to question your ability to teach and inspire kids.

Of course, how can you blame others for treating you like you’re invisible, like you’re a non-person, when you’ve received that kind of treatment from your own sibling and father? If family can do that, I guess that’s fair game by others. (Oh yeah, speaking of family, I heard that Cicy’s mother taught at a different location of that school, so I would guess that’s how Cicy got that job. Nepotism at its finest.)

There was one incident when Cicy brought her dog to school. My classroom happened to be across the hall from hers. My students were supposed to be focusing on their English 12 reading assignment, but they were too busy checking out Cicy’s dog across the hall. I closed the blinds but that didn’t work. Now, some peers will scoff and say that it proved I didn’t know how to teach. But the thing is, Cicy could have done something to help out the situation by maybe coming over to apologize and ask the students to focus in their class? This Cicy never even bothered to come and talk to me to acknowledge that her dog created some inconvenience for me.

So, okay, I collect toys. But the actions of this grown adult, this female teacher, should be considered even more “childish,” in my opinion.

And speaking of being “childish,” I can say that people who refuse to follow rules are childish. In some cases, they’re thieves. Recently, I took the bus (and, sure, some people will scoff and say “Serves you right for taking the bus,” but last time I checked, countless people use transit every single day) and sat at the back, where I witnessed this bald dude get on via the back door, did not pay (passengers are supposed to tap their Compass bus card on the system), and took a seat and proceeded to stick his knee out in the aisle during the duration of the ride in a way that would make Ulf Samuelsson proud (that’s a reference to the former Pittsburgh Penguins player who famously stuck his knee out and injured Boston Bruins star Cam Neely). And, oh, he didn’t wear a mask, even though for transit passengers in this city, it’s still mandatory to have a mask on.

So, you have this fellow who 1) didn’t pay (meaning he’s the equivalent of a thief), 2) didn’t wear a mask (a type of childish behaviour when we’re in the midst of a pandemic), and 3) stuck his knee out and was in the way of people who were trying to get to the back of the bus the entire ride.

I mean, at least this thieving fella wasn’t a teacher, I don’t think. But shame on people like Cicy and others who treat others like they’re invisible. And the sad thing is some of these people are teachers.

Oh yeah. This school that I referenced? I quit twice before and I was begged to return, so I did. However, I quit a third time recently – and I don’t think I’ll be back. If I wanted to be treated like I’m invisible, I could just hang out with family and get that.