Having spent three years at Penn State now, I've seen some pretty bizarre things around campus. I've seen people talking to squirrels, people riding a unicycle up Atherton St., crazy outfits, crazy hairdos—you name, it I've seen it. Penn State is great for their huge and diverse student body!
Recently I was working out in the White Building early one morning. I grumpily walked in on a Monday morning just feeling all crabby because it was a cold Monday and my week was filled to the brim. As I was working out I saw the most ridiculous man come in and start to do a workout. He was jumping up and down over the bench, doing jumping jacks with dumbells, dancing around like he was in a club, and so many other odd movements. It was by far the weirdest spectacle I have ever seen in the gym.
My grumpy Monday mood right away lifted as I just felt so happy watching the crazy guy dance around. Everyone behind him was sneakily taking videos and clearly posting it all over social media. So I continued on with my Monday with very little thought about this morning's spectacle until that evening I opened Instagram. I was scrolling through my newsfeed when I came across PSUBarstool's post. Someone had sent in the video of the guy at the gym and it had been posted making fun of the guy. I was looking through the comments and saw that this man actually got tagged by one of his friends.
This man posted a few hours after being featured on Barstool about how yesterday he got chemo injections and today he's being made fun of publically. He went on about how he ended up in the hospital for an extended period of time and since then has to get chemo treatments and deal with chronic pain. He found that the cure for the pain is constant movement. My jaw dropped reading this. There I was with the rest of the gym just judging this guy thinking he's a big weirdo without taking a second to ask him what motivates him to do exercises like that.
After reading this Instagram post, I really thought about how easy it is for us to take a quick look at someone and make instant judgments. We assume we know what makes this person tick when we are most likely far from being accurate. Not only do we make these far-off assumptions, but we also don't even take a second to think about how hurtful our thoughts really can be to people.
Each and every one of us is guilty of taking a first glance at someone and making a judgment– it's human nature. However, we need to not let our judgment effect how we treat someone and always try to get the full story! The world would be a significantly kinder place if we could all just embrace everyone's differences without any thought!