My father once gave me some advice. He said, "You should always be good to your secretary." I've always tried to live that, and was thinking about other people we should always be good to, and came up with the following list:
-- Your secretary or administrative assistant: they can make your work life miserable if they are not happy.
-- Your garbage man: supply your own reason, but it's just good advice.
-- Troubled teens: they have enough drama in their lives without angry words from an adult.
-- Anybody who can give you money: for obvious reasons.
-- Widows: nobody can reap an eternal reward without caring for the widows.
-- Children younger than 10: before they learn to be little punks, you have an opportunity to teach them to not be little punks.
-- Policemen, firemen, and nurses: when trouble comes, you'll be glad they're on your side.
-- Local bands: though they may be unrealistic, there's something wonderful about simple and extravagant dreams.
-- Cashiers: anybody who can treat me as if I'm buying a bag of pretzels while they scan a box of tampons is all right in my book.
There's probably more, but I had some opinions on those to whom we don't necessarily need to be kind:
-- Doctors: in my opinion, people who get paid exorbitant fees to take care of you deserve only the respect they give out.
-- Banktellers and the bankers behind them: they're overgrown cashiers who often act like we owe them a favor for taking our money off our hands -- and then give us really bad interest rates.
-- Elected officials: they have their job because of us, but they so rarely do anything good with it.
Again, the list could probably be longer, but I'll leave it there.