"Click! Click!" We all know that sound of a lighter—click, click—as someone tries to light a cigarette, joint, candle, or campfire. It can also ignite a forest fire, if not used carefully.
So, here I sat in front of my computer the other day, not realizing that I had a tool in my hand that was as powerful as one of those lighters, if not more so.
It was "just a recipe" for Spaghetti & Meatballs that I was reading on my favorite recipe website www.tasteofhome.com, my go to when I need a simple but yummy get-it-into-my-stomach-now recipe that utilizes things in my pantry and freezer.
But, in this moment, it was war! My cursor hovered over the “dislike” button below someone’s snarky comment about how this recipe was in no way an authentic Italian recipe, and was a disgrace to those who truly knew Italian cuisine. "It's nothing like my Grandma's spaghetti and meatballs!" he added in his comment. The audacity of this guy to post a review judging the recipe without even making it in the first place.
“Oh c’mon, buddy. It’s a recipe. It’s food. Who cares about whether it tastes like your Grandma Sofia’s spaghetti and meatballs?” I said aloud, as I joined twelve other like-minded individuals and clicked the thumb’s down button on his post.
As I did so, immediately my heart plummeted with my thumb's down click. A vision of this individual flashed in front of me, like a movie scene in fast forward. In the vision, he was lamenting his childhood when Grandma was alive. He was enshrouded in sadness, seeking acknowledgement, acceptance, and even admiration for being “right” by posting his review of the recipe that he had not even made. His snarky comment wasn’t intended to be mean, but was his soul’s cry for acknowledgement. And, as I quickly realized, I’d responded with my own snarky-ness. “Oh God, I’m so sorry,” I said, and quickly retracted my click. Then I told myself, "Geez, Sum, it's just a recipe!"
Gadzooks! I had this overwhelming sensation that one more "thumbs' down" could have been the demise of this poor soul. And then I pondered the fact that the little pointer that I moved around with my mouse is called a "cursor." I could literally curse or bless someone with it! My little mouse could sneak in and—BLAM!—discretely shame or bless someone every time.
It might have been "just a recipe," but it had me one click away from love. Thank God I was able to retract my thumb's down. Sometimes in life, that's not always possible. Sometimes we're just one click away from creating something we might not even know we could regret. And, that same click, pointed in the right direction, can ignite love.