Just Say You're Sorry
Remember in 3rd grade when you accidentally knocked over your classmate Tommy's tacky Looney Tunes pencil and how your teacher made you apologize? Even then, you knew that apologizing was the responsible thing to do (if you wanted to go to recess). Sure, you might've cried a little bit and wanted to explain that it was just an accident, but saying sorry was the smart thing to do.
The key to apologizing isn't being sincere, it's sucking up and doing it.
Oh come on, don't give me that look... You're telling me every time you say sorry you have to actually mean it?! Tell that to the owner of Moonstar Buffet when I ravaged their supply of cocktail shrimps. Yeah I said sorry; sorry that I got my money's worth in shrimps.
Whenever you say sorry, you're admitting that you did something wrong and you feel bad about it. At least that's the dictionary definition of it, and at least annoying Tommy's definition of sorry.
Apologizing brings a closure to you and the person you hurt. While you may not think you're at fault, a sorry brings an end to the situation, Now you're able to think clearly without the distraction of debating whether you're right.
But there are nuances to apologizing to someone. Here are some scenarios to know when you should say sorry:
- You cancel plans with your friend THE DAY BEFORE you were supposed to have a fun date at Japantown. Sorry Rachel!
- Your sadistic urges overcome you and you murder someone. I guess you should say sorry but maybe not to the corpse. Maybe the parents of the person you murdered? This is a tricky situation.
- You're a 15 year old playing tetherball with your sister's 5th grade friend Vivien when you spike the ball for the righteous win and you hit her right in the face. In this case, you would obviously apologize to Vivien, but also your sister because they're not gonna be friends after this.
- Amber Rose posts a picture of herself wearing what resembles floss and you like the picture, making your girlfriend (or boyfriend?) mad. I think you should apologize to Amber Rose's father, but you shouldn't be saying sorry just because she be looking real fine.
"But Liping, saying sorry = losing."
I don't want to pull the Chinese card here, but numerically, sorry does not equal losing. But I get what you're trying to say.
There's nothing wrong with losing for the sake of being responsible adults and/or people who just want to move along with their lives.
Just like a customer service representative, saying sorry is essential to the well-being of you and the person yelling at you for the crappy Comcast internet.
Liping is the founder and editor-in-chief of lipinghuang.com. He is currently a sophomore at San Francisco State University studying Business Marketing.