If there was one thing guaranteed to incur the wrath of my mother, it was a child who whined. Come to think of it, I’m not a big fan of whining either – whether it’s a child or an adult doing it. I positively detest it when it’s me doing it.
A really robust whine worthy of the name is a carefully balanced mixture of self-pity, righteous indignation, and martyrdom with just a soupçon of victimhood, narcissism, and passive aggression to give it that certain je ne sais quoi.
- Righteous indignation
- Passive aggression
Now there’s a list of ingredients that is quite the heady brew. And pure poison when drunk on a regular basis. To say nothing of the lollapaloozer of a hangover you get when you binge on whine.
I’ve noticed something about whining. The people who have the most right to do it, don’t. And the frequent whiners have got it so good that you’ve got to wonder what the hell they would do if something really bad happened to them.
All good whines come from the master gripe called “Life Isn’t Fair.” You pluck that gripe off the vine and squeeze the bejesus out of it, and you are going to have yourself one helluva whine. But whoever told you life was fair? It isn’t. Bad things happen to good people. Good things happen to bad people. Get over it.
And let’s face it. When you’re in the middle of a really, really good whine, it’s because:
- You want something you don’t have,
- You’re afraid of losing something you already
- You have to do something you don’t want to do.
And by “you,” of course I mean me. A friend of mine wrote a post the other day that I loved. I especially loved the quotes she used, as did some of her other readers. She mentioned she had been collecting quotes her whole life. And here’s how my thankfully silent and unexpressed (until now) whine went. “Oh, gee, Sandi is so lucky to have all those quotes. It’s not fair. I want lots of quotes too. Boo hoo, boo hoo. Woe is me.”
But here’s the truth. A few years ago, I started collecting quotes too. And then, in a fit of efficiency and file paring, I tossed them out. Sandi didn’t do that. So what’s not fair about the fact Sandi has quotes, and I don’t? Nothing. Not one damned thing.
Here’s more truth. Why did I really want quotes? Because I wanted my blog to be as good as Sandi’s. I thought if I copied what she was doing, I would get what she had. I would get something I didn’t have but really wanted.
But here’s the truth – more of it. Sandi has been blogging longer and working harder at her blog than I have. She has earned every single reader and every single comment and every single great conversation coming her way. Nothing unfair about it.
There are two keys to having a successful blog (or anything else I whine about and yearn to have). First of all, I need to be me and not a carbon copy of someone else. Second, I need to take action, and whining isn’t action.
You know what? Whining didn’t work when I was a child, and it doesn’t work now.
Be honest. Do you whine? Do you do a lot of looking at your neighbor’s greener grass? It might be time to put your whine down and start tending the grass on your side of the fence. I’m just saying.