On Thursday night, I noticed a striking picture on Twitter from @unequalscenes. The photo of a man riding a bike on a flooded street in New York City during Wednesday nights' torrential rain caught my attention-- the man was delivering pizza. I, like hundreds or thousands, commented in shock, dismay, and anger. What the hell is this? Some selfish blockhead ordered pizza during a serious storm? There are so many jarring aspects to this photograph, hence it went viral. I am pleased to see that a photographer has made it his business to record the inequities of our world. There is a website--unequalscenes.com/projects, that explains the efforts of this photographer.
Inequity, perhaps that is the word I need. Inequity is not new, but I notice contrasts between the rich and poor, women and men, entitled and excluded, younger and older to name a few, occurring with increased frequency in my immediate environment. What path did we take, what corner turned, what ship sailed that takes people to new destinations of self absorption? Who, what, where did the older generations go wrong? How did increased self-esteem evolve into me, me, me!
An opportunity may exist, but the choice to act upon it is voluntary. Yes, one can call Uber Eats or Grubhub to order a pizza. And food delivery can be useful. However, if there is a raging storm, why would an individual think that someone else should risk their safety to satisfy a desire for pizza? Where is conscience? In my previous residence, I saw one latte, etc. being delivered. WTF to be blunt?
I remember asking my mother, "What is conscience?" I read the word as con--science. She explained the concept to me. As a child, I visualized a person on my shoulder or in my brain advising me on right vs. wrong. Of course, I developed an overactive superego, but that is another story to tell.
I do not ask why the worker went out in the rain? I know the answer. I ask why do consumers think they should do or because it is available. As I have written before, I am imperfect. I buy unnecessary items. I indulge in specialty foods and drinks. However, I do have a conscience. I know when to stop. And I taught my children this idea and concomitant behaviors.
How is it that FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) is a legitimate concern? Every day we decide and then act. We forego one experience for another. Hopefully, we accomplish what is necessary and remain cognizant of our family's needs and our well-being. Then we can have fun.
I am conscious of the days racing by. I am sad that I cannot travel now. But I know this is what life has thrown at me. Yes, I am missing out. Yes, I cannot go to the theater or concerts. I hate it! And I hate the virus. My solution is to substitute other activities for traveling or going out at night.
So please, when a hurricane is raging or the earth is shaking or a fire is on the horizon, eat popcorn instead of pizza.