Dear Petty Bettys
Dilshani Palugaswewa and Shani Asokan address the elephant in the room
As you go about your day, I want you to think about a few things. Your small-minded, spiteful nature is an unpleasant perfume that you diffuse around every room you walk into and to be frank, none of us care for it and sure as heck don’t want the smell of it. Your self-centred conversations and clearly fabricated ‘true’ stories might be a hit discussion with some of your friends who haven’t heard them a million times over with a new punchline each time, but just know that we know exactly what happened and we applaud your creativity and absolute guile in retelling the same old tale with a few tweaks to fit your audience like a glove.
But it must be said, it gets pretty old when you deflect blame on other people for your missteps and pin all your misshappenings on your troubled past. Because here’s the thing – we all have problems, some worse than others but that does not give you the right to ridicule someone else’s feelings and measure your hurt above theirs. You do not get to use your problems as an excuse to hurt anybody else. We are all human. And just because we may look like we’re happy, having almost busted a gut or two from laughing every minute of every day, it does not mean we don’t have a part of our life that no one knows about where we’ve been wounded and jaded. So yeah, maybe turn that down a notch because even while we truly do care for you, it gets hard to deal with when there is no respect on this two way street that is friendship. If you really do care, own up to your mistakes and learn the art of apology because an apology isn’t one where you say, “sorry” and follow it up with a, “in my defence it wasn’t my fault,” because it most definitely was your fault, and we know that you know it.
We deal with petty people on a daily basis but what makes you different is that you are the pettiest of them all – if there was a crown for it, you’d be wearing it. With you, ‘it will eventually fizzle out’ isn’t a mindset to go by because it never seems to end – your misbehaviour and unfair judgment on others isn’t a phase or isn’t because you just happen to dislike that one person. It’s everyone or anyone who strikes your fancy or just happens to cross you at the wrong hour on the wrong day (which is more than three-quarters of 365 days, mind you). And there’s no rising above either, because each time we take what we think is the high-road it turns out to be the doormat on which you’ve been brazenly cleaning your dirty shoes.
Betty, we have nothing against you but at this point, we also have nothing for you. Your overwhelming pettiness over the most trivial things truly appals us. Your undeniable double standards and the fact that you know it but couldn’t care less have eviscerated the last bit of respect we thought you were worthy of. So reconsider putting down that card you ever triumphantly play – your self-nominated trump card if you will. Just save it, because no one is playing with that trick deck apart from you. Averting blame form yourself and implying others weren’t sensitive to your problems or that they didn’t understand where you were coming from when they walk away will only help you to stick your head in the sand.
As for your entertainment choices, we all love to watch some good drama with a giant bowl of popcorn but what we generally do is buy a ticket to catch the evening show at the nearest cinema or open up a streaming app, and definitely not create the drama we seek out of pure boredom. We’ll say it now, we like watching drama but being a part of it, not so much. We’ve seen you stir the pot for sh!ts and giggles and then absolutely refusing to get involved in the mess so that other people see you as a saving grace, the hero who swoops in to save the day but god, do we know you live for those brawls.
The unfortunate thing is that there’s no giving you the benefit of the doubt. You are well aware of the outward manifestation of your immature school of thought but also cannot help yourself because that’s the one dish you know how to cook best and love to serve it piping hot. You don’t just like the drama you create, you thrive on it.
We understand that what we see as petty holds much value in your eyes. We know how absolutely important it is for you to make a mountain out of the molehill but always remember, no one likes a Petty Betty. But on the rare occasion that someone does though, be sure to make sure they read your signboard ‘Welcome to Pettyville’ so that they know exactly what they’re getting into because we’ve been there, done that and left like a cartoon running through a wall.
Definitely not Petty Bettys