From the This I Believe website, I found an essay called “Respect The Little Guy” written by Arin from Colorado. (LINK: http://thisibelieve.org/essay/88110/). The author expresses his frustration at the lack of respect for people with “dead end” jobs. Arin is a 19 year old who has worked as both a busser for two years and as a dishwasher at a 263-room hotel. His job is physically and emotionally demanding. Arin and his crew are constantly washing a never ending supply of dishes and sometimes have to deal with rude and/or demanding customers. He explains that dish washing, bussing, and other such laborious occupations are tough and draining on the body, but are necessary. Speaking from his own experiences, Arin condemns the apparent culture of disrespect toward people with low-paying, physically laborious jobs. People who disrespect and talk down to others because they have “dead end jobs” don’t realize that someone has to do them. Arin believes that everyone should respect “the little guy” and show workers respect and common courtesy.
I was struck by the simplicity, frankness, and beauty of this piece. Arin beautifully described getting dishes handed to him to wash, how his work is never quite done, and how giving someone a bad attitude can spread like a virus. I was not at all surprised by this, because I have always known that a little kindness and respect can go a long way.