Today I have a treat. This is Random Text Friday with a moral.
After my pertinent morning ritual of brushing teeth, getting kids to school and coffee, I check my text messages before getting dressed and eating breakfast. I usually have a couple waiting for me from G or my husband when he is working nights. This morning I had this one waiting for me:
(random phone number): Hey is this Ian?
I immediately replied:
Me: No, sadly it is not.
Receiving random texts or phone calls from people I have never met happens to me often, and I always respond with the obligatory “Sorry you have the wrong number” text in an effort to be nice. You know, do unto others and the Golden Rule stuff. Some people change phone numbers like we hope they change their underwear and it isn’t hurting me to be considerate and let them know that they are not speaking to whomever it is they were hoping to speak. Plus, I would appreciate the same consideration.
Most of the time the messages are as simple as the one above. Other times the unidentified person and I have a little chat before parting ways (bloom where you’re planted, right?). But one time, and I do thank God it was only one time, I opened a text that I wish I hadn’t.
One morning after the pertinent ritual, my phone’s notification alert gave its little jingle, so I stopped what I was doing to check to see who needed to speak with me so early in the morning.
A number showed up on my in-box screen, so I knew it wasn’t someone I spoke with or texted often. Those people I speak or text with often are in my address book and appear in the inbox with a name. I know the societal rule of thumb is to not open or accept any text messages or phone calls from a number you do not recognize, but I couldn’t help myself. There was a picture attached.
The first message read, “I went shopping yesterday. How do you like my new blouse?” Attached to the text was a head to waist photo of a middle-aged black woman. She was lovely in her new v-neck blouse.
As I was reading the first message, a second message arrived and read, “Or would you prefer this?” with a little smiley emoticon and accompanied by a head to waist frontal nude photo of this woman. Stunned motionless, I heard screaming in my head, “My eyes! My eyes!”
Although I was momentarily jealous of what God had endowed to her, I quickly hit ‘reply’ which moved the photo up far enough to make room for the onscreen keyboard, but not far enough to remove the woman’s gigantic boobs. As I typed my reply explaining that I am not the person she thought I was, and she might want to check the number more closely, headless, monster boobs were staring me down!
I can’t imagine the embarrassment this woman must have felt at the moment she realized that she had sent those photos to the wrong person. If it were me, I would have been so mortified that I would never consider sending another picture, no matter how tame, to another person ever again. I would block whatever number I had mistakenly sent the photo to in order to remove any possibility of having contact with that person for the rest of my life. Then for the next month, I would fret about what I would do if that person ever publicized those photos in a blog along with a long, detailed explanation about how he or she received them. Or, God forbid, he or she put them on Facebook. I would simply die.
This random woman did none of that. Her response was unaffected. She simply typed, “Oops. That was for my boyfriend.” Her ease with the situation was actually calming. There was no mortified plea of an innocent mistake. No embarrassment at having a stranger see her nude. Could this woman really be that secure with who she is to not care?
Well, if she didn’t care, why should I? So I replied, “Well, he’s one lucky man, and that blouse is very lovely.”
I never heard from her again.
Oh, I promised you a moral to this story. What do you think the moral of the story should be?