Shaken Not Stirred

Thursday, March 22, 2007

You Can't Judge A Book By It's Cover

I have a tendency to do things like this. It's such a bad habit and one that I should really work on. I tend to sum up a person by their mannerisms and their appearance.

The other day at a service shop (I like to have my car maintained every few months--that sounds like my car is a chick huh, using the word maintained), there were a few other people waiting while their cars got serviced. Among the people waiting was a guy wearing some sort of coverall/jumpsuit thing and another guy dressed to the nines, including a Frank Sinatra looking hat. The guy in the hat struck up a conversation (at the time I assumed out of boredom). I kept my face down in a book because I didn't want to talk to anyone.

The two began a conversation about politics. They talked about the presidential campaign. They talked about certain issues which haven't been dealt with and which should be on the forefront of every politician's agenda. They talked about the war, the right side and the wrong side. Both talked sometimes heatedly about their points of view.

The thing that surprised me the most and it shouldn't have was the rougher looking guy was eloquent and well spoken. He almost sounded like a politician himself. Whenever he would quote something, he would reference it to either some news channel or a magazine.

I've really gotta stop judging a book by it's cover. This is how some great novels escape me.


  • Haha love the quote at the end.

    I think we all do it although some of us make the effort not too it still sometimes slips in a little its just years of media/peer brain washing.

    By Blogger Pixie, at 9:00 AM  

  • There's lots of books nowadays with very attractive covers, but full of blank pages, or the story can be summed up in one sentence in large kindergarten font: "See Dick Run."

    I think all the pretty covers out there are more prevalent since in our era beauty has a price tag, and people have the option of changing the way they look, with the irony that some of these people have nothing pretty on the inside.

    Then there's books like the guy in overalls, who looks well worn on the outside, but it's from them having a great story within and everyone wanting to read this book.

    By Blogger Walter, at 10:19 AM  

  • i hear ya. i do it too. thanks for reminding me to make a point to try to do it less. and reminding me that just because someone is sporting double denim, tapered leg jeans, and a mullet, they may be the most interesting person in the world.

    By Blogger brookem, at 11:40 AM  

  • I confess that I judged you by your overalls--when we first met..sorry! Little did I know that we'd end up being buddies (4hr phone marathons??!). Of course there were mistakes with other "appearances." Happy Spring!

    By Anonymous Babette, at 11:44 AM  

  • Actually, a book with a poorly drawn cover might indicate a publisher with low standards.

    By Blogger Gyrobo, at 12:43 PM  

  • Don't get too cocky my boy. No matter how good you are don't ever let them see you coming. That's the gaffe my friend. You gotta keep yourself small. Innocuous. Be the little guy. You know, the nerd... the leper... shit-kickin' surfer. Look at me. Underestimated from day one. You'd never think I was a master of the universe, now would ya? - Al Pacino in The Devil's Advocate

    By Anonymous whatigotsofar, at 12:56 PM  

  • Hate to say it, but we are ALL guilty of this Angel! Good lesson for us all, and we can NEVER hear it enough.

    By Blogger twolf1920, at 1:04 PM  

  • babette - overalls? really? well osh kosh b'gosh!

    and angel, did you rip that last quote off from Hallmark? Wowzers. And I don't believe I've ever had to have my "chick" maintained. I'll have to check with her though.

    Wow, that was a pretty prickish comment huh? Sorry about that.

    By Blogger The Duck, at 1:53 PM  

  • Angel, 'chicks' are 'maintained' because guys talk about girls like they do cars. That's where the expression comes from.

    Anotehr blogger, Tai, just made a similar post. And I'll give you the same answer I gave her:

    Actually, it's all right to judge someone by what you see, when that's all you know of them. Appearance is usually a concious choice, even for those who don't care what their appearance is.

    The crime is to base all future interactions on that one impression. Should you ever get to know one of these guys, let all your interctions either reinforce or contradict your impression, as the case may be. But you can't let that first impression rule your interactions with him or her.

    By Blogger blackcrag, at 2:08 PM  

  • Boy if you don't get here quick enough, everyone has said all that can be said, great audience.

    As others have said, we all do or have done it as it's natural. The crime as blackcrag points out is to not keep an open mind and allow the person to change that initial judgement.

    By Blogger Rocketstar, at 4:45 PM  

  • I like to be obscure, and lay low. People probably think I'm stupid, or an airhead, but they don't really know...hehheeee

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:01 PM  

  • It's generally a bad idea to talk politics with strangers. Especially when one of them could be packing a tommy gun.

    By Blogger Mike, at 2:06 AM  

  • True...but you have to start long as you keep an open mind.

    By Blogger Chick, at 8:03 AM  

  • Great quote at the end hon.


    By Blogger Claire, at 10:56 AM  

  • Yes you shouldn't judge too quickly. I make new friends where ever I go! I usually talk to just about anyone who will respond back.

    By Blogger Nutz On A Roll, at 12:37 PM  

  • I think we all are guilty of doing it. Just in our nature I guess. And no I did not pay to see "The Producers."

    By Blogger Mr. Shife, at 2:16 PM  

  • Good observation--we can all use that reminder.

    For example, I suspect Pixie is not ACTUALLY a pixie. And I may or may not be a devil.

    -- david

    By Blogger David Amulet, at 4:43 PM  

  • There are a lot of people that do that, so don't feel bad.
    Think about the things "they" tell you about "success" in the work place.
    Dress for success...dress for the job you want. Amazingly, those people that dress the part will get looked at first (most likely 9 times out of 10).
    Just a thought!
    Have a great weekend Angel.

    By Blogger Lee Ann, at 10:41 PM  

  • great post... i am ashamed to say i do it more often than i should. :(

    your post made me aware that i don't like being judged by my cover so i shouldn't be so quick to judge others as well.

    have a great weekend.

    By Blogger Trixie, at 12:44 AM  

  • I'm the exact same way.

    By Blogger Lindsey, at 6:54 AM  

  • Yeah, harder to stereotype nowadays... but there are still people out there who do fall into a stereotype?

    What stereotype do you fall into?

    I have stereotypical behaviours of an Asian girl in that when complimented, I just smile and bow down my head?! I have to remind myself to say thank you.

    By Blogger missy, at 7:11 AM  

  • You're the fourth person today that I've heard say "I ought to judge people less..."

    Fie on it, I say! It's human nature, and you can no more banish your snap judgements from your brain than take out your logic & sense. Yes yes, everyone you meet is a multidimensional creature, but you only have a few seconds to glean a first impression from someone, and all you've got to reference is previous experience. As long as it doesn't bind you from getting to know someone further, then I don't see the harm in having a first impression.

    And like I said on Tai's blog -- if no one judged me when they first meet me, then I'd be rather disappointed, because I'd rather make an impression that be forgettable! :)

    By Blogger kimber the wolfgrrrl, at 2:01 AM  

  • Hmmm, I think we all tend to judge people by their looks at some stage, even if we try not to.
    Hope you have a great week.
    Take care, Meow

    By Blogger Meow, at 2:52 AM  

  • I am one of those odd people I will talk to anyone, but not about politics! haha.

    I agree though we all tend to judge sometimes. What book were you reading?

    By Blogger Phats, at 1:23 AM  

  • It is a common misjudgement by many. Nice to see that you have learned the lesson.

    By Blogger :P fuzzbox, at 9:54 PM  

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