Vol. 8    No. 7
APRIL 4, 2013

The Capital City Hues
(608) 241-2000

Subscription Information:
The Capital City Hues
PO Box 259712
Madison, WI 53725
($45 a year)
Contact Number:
(608) 241-2000
Advertising: Claire G. Mendoza


Jonathan Gramling
Publisher & Editor

Clarita G. Mendoza
Sales Manager

Contributing Writers
Rita Adair, Ike Anyanike, Paul
Barrows, Alfonso Zepeda
Capistran, Theola Carter, Fabu,
Andrew Gramling, Lang Kenneth
Haynes, Rebecca Her, Heidi
Pascual,  & Martinez White
Reflections/Jonathan Gramling
                             Common Courtesy
A note on the school board election – Congratulations to James Howard for winning reelection to his seat
on the Madison school board Tuesday night in convincing fashion. With union endorsements and a great
deal more experience with Madison’s public schools, Howard racked up almost 77 percent of the vote.

And in spite of not receiving the union endorsements, which carry with them significant human and
financial resources relative to a local school board race, Wayne Strong is currently trailing Dean Loumos
by only 279 votes. The absentee ballots cast in this election — and it is probably hundreds — won’t be
counted until next Tuesday, so this race is, as they say, too close to call. Wayne and Dean ran a good
race in spite of all of the mess that was going on around them. No matter what the eventual outcome is,
Wayne Strong is a winner and showed to all in the Madison area that he is a vital candidate.
The other day, my son and I were driving down E. Washington Avenue when a car came whizzing by us,
cutting in front of us as they hurried along their way. As we continued on our journey, we noticed that we
kept up with the speeding car even though we were observing the speed limit and were courteous to
other cars and to pedestrians trying to cross the street.

Although the speeding car was putting other people at risk through its hazardous maneuvers, my guess is
that eventually the driver of said car saved 30-60 seconds in getting to their destination by driving this
way. And was that one minute saved really worth the risk and the discourteousness that the driver put
the rest of us through?

Now I have to admit that I do not always follow the speed limit and I do like to be efficient with my time
because there is always so much to do. I like to get ahead and save time. And so, I am deliberate with my
time and must recognize that I am a part of the rat race of life.

But I have also come to realize that being courteous to other people, whether it is other shoppers in a store
or fellow drivers on the road probably costs me maybe 10 minutes of my time throughout the day. Instead
of opening a door and rushing through it, perhaps I spend an additional 10 seconds holding the door for
someone else. And holding the door gives my arm muscle a micro-workout during the course of the day.
If someone drops something, I’ll help them pick it up. What does that cost me, perhaps five seconds? And I
will have again gotten a little exercise in the process.

When I am driving, I’ll make sure that I let someone in who is trying to enter from a side street unless it
endangers people in other vehicles. Again it takes perhaps five seconds. It might even mean that the car I
let in makes it through the stop-and-go light down the street and I get stopped by a red light. But how much
time does that involve, maybe one minute of waiting? That’s not too much of a price to pay to be courteous.

If I am waiting in line at the grocery store, I am buying a few things and I notice that there is a parent with
fidgeting small children behind me, I’ll let that parent go ahead of me. How much time does that really take, 2-
3 minutes? And by doing so, haven’t I made the shopping experience more pleasant not only for the parent,
but also for the rest of the shoppers — and grocery staff — near them?

While it might feel like a big inconvenience to be courteous and it may feel that we are being hopelessly set
back on our schedules by not muscling forward and saving our time to the detriment of all others, it’s really
only a matter of shaving off a few minutes of our day to be courteous to others.

And I know that all of us waste 10 minutes out of our day. We may watch a TV program that we really don’
t want to watch. We might lie in bed anxious over our hectic schedule for the next day. We might aimlessly
cruise the Internet out of sheer boredom. And we could have spent that time being courteous.

There is a saying that what goes around, comes around. If I take 5-10 minutes out of my day to make it a
better world for other people, won’t that eventually make my world a better place? And just by being
courteous, I will have already made my world better for at least just that moment of courtesy, I will have
left the demeaning rat race behind and reinforced the goodness of my own humanity.

Be courteous and pass it on!