(Psssttt....I'm going out on a limb and trying a new interactive segment that will require a bunch of comments to be posted, so please throw me a bone...or a conflict...and maybe this won't be totally lame.)
Sometimes we are wrong and we know it.
We know it right away without anybody having to point out the obvious.
Take, for example, Ryan Seacrest. Last week nearly every household in the United States saw him attempt to high-five a blind American Idol contestant who had just won a golden ticket to Hollywood. This was a pretty big mistake on Seacrest's part since the only two physical requirements for high-fiving are working limbs and vision. If you pause the video below at the :08 mark you can almost hear Seacrest's brain screaming, "Noooooooooooo!" as his body instinctively sets up for the high five (the quality is poor but it was the only video I could find on the web.)
Seacrest knew that he made a mistake. No question about it. Seacrest, out!
But sometimes we are wrong and we don't realize it, especially when it comes to disagreements we are having with other people. In times like this we need a neutral, objective third party to help resolve the issue. Somebody like a wise old aunt, Locke from Lost, or Judge Judy when she's taking her meds. While I am not as qualified to resolve disputes as a TV judge, I do find myself fairly regularly in situations at work where I am asked to intervene and resolve disagreements. Sometimes both parties are very happy with the outcome. Other times they end up so mad at me that they think I am a heartless, inconsiderate, unfair corporate jerk. Such is the life of an HR Manager.
As a limited-time promotion I am willing to offer my conflict resolution skills to you, the readers of my blog, free of charge! (The jerk-free kind, of course.)
Just post a comment summarizing the issue you are having with somebody else and I will tell you who is right and even offer some sort of wacky, though practical, compromise to help get the problem resolved. Ideally the types of conflicts that you post about will be the humorous, less serious things that come up in our everyday lives as people, spouses, parents, employees, church members, etc. and not the serious, heavy issues that would require a true professional like Dr. Phil, Dr. Katz or Dr. J. For example, here are two of the minor, insignificant, real-world examples that the Normal Mormon Wife and I are working though right now: (Please vote on the right to help us settle these.)
-One of us pronounces the word "coupon" as "q-pawn". The other pronounces it "koo-pawn". Which one of us is correct?
-The NMW and I have incorporated a lot of wheat into our diets to stay healthy (sandwich bread, rolls, etc.) One of us wants to begin using whole wheat pasta for our spaghetti and has seen the kids eat wheat pasta before without batting an eye. The other wants us to keep using traditional spaghetti pasta mainly because of the grainy taste of wheat pasta. We eat a lot of pasta and the health versus taste debate needs to get settled. What do we do?
Ideally there will be enough submissions by the end of this week (Saturday 1/31) that I can address a different issue every day next week. The more submissions I get, the more likely it is that you will have something new to read every day instead of doing your jobs or supervising your children, so please help me out.
At the very least I hope this will lead to an entertaining week-long posting spree. And who knows, this might even help a few people resolve some real-world disagreements. If something good comes out of this then it will definitely be cause for celebration.
High fives for everybody!