Trout Republic-It could be worse

Life brings us many different experiences -- some good and some bad, of course.

I would suppose that good choices have a lot to do with how and where we find ourselves especially later in life to some extent but luck plays a part also.

Miss Trixie reminds Ol’ Dutch daily how lucky he is to be with her and I suppose there is a measure of truth to that. Her Momma thought the sun never set on this daughter and no matter the challenges Ol’ Dutch faces with her on a daily basis, it could be worse.

That statement is a favorite of mine the older I get as I hear people use it to describe any situation they happen to be in that does not meet their expectations.

You can find people using it in all kinds of situations from sitting in traffic to being in a hurricane of immense proportions.

It is a coping mechanism for some folks and for others a great scapegoat phrase to use when someone they know is suffering and words of comfort just do not come.

For instance. Let’s say your friend is going through a divorce and has no money, her kids were taken away and she has no place to live. A good friend would try and help such a person with maybe some cash and a bed to sleep in but the well-meaning others can always rely on “just remember Sally, it could be worse.”

This is supposed to bring relief to this person in dire straits and make them thankful for not being in a concentration camp in WWII or some such horrible tragedy.

Now Ol’ Dutch does realize that he has been blessed beyond measure in life but every so often some calamity befalls me and I feel bad. At those times I really do not want to hear “it could be worse” as some kind of consoling phrase.

Of course it can be worse for about any situation you can name short of ending up in hell which I think is about as bad as it can get and no one there ever hears “it could be worse” you can count on that.

Normally well-meaning people have adopted this phrase first of all because they do not know what else to say but probably most importantly, it lets them off the hook to actually help the person involved.

They hope that the person suffering from some dreaded disease will suddenly have an epiphany and a light will go off in their brain about how much worse it could be and things then will be OK.

Most of the time when Ol’ Dutch has something wrong like a skinned knee  a kiss on the boo-boo would be sufficient to heal me right up. It sure worked when I was a little boy and had a mom who believed that love heals. You would think well-meaning people would somehow recall how a kind word and touch worked for them, also.

Mostly however what you get is someone saying “well be thankful you didn't break your hip” followed by a lengthy description about how they did.

This is followed by all the gory details about the infection that set in afterward, the terrible rehab and pain they suffered.

I guess a person should always consider those things when something bad happens and find some comfort in them.

Or, maybe it is better to accept that your friends simply don’t know what to say and in the absence of something meaningful, they revert to the obvious. Look on the bright side, though, it is better to have tongue-tied friends then no friends at all. It certainly, “could be worse.”

Kevin Kirkpatrick and his Yorkie, Cooper, fish, hunt, ATV or hike daily. His email is [email protected]. Additional news can be found at or on Twitter at TroutRepublic.

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