“Hi, how are you?” Don’t you grow tired of having to answer that question? It seems to be the beginning of all conversations, both casual and familiar. I hate to lie and say, “Oh, just fine,” when I usually am not anywhere near that but when I tell the truth, I always feel as if I am whining. One grows tired of that, or at least I know I do. I thought today we’d have some fun with that whole concept therefore, let’s whine about whining. Are you onboard?
When you’ve had chronic pain for many years whining becomes an art form, a sacred ritual while also becoming a bit repetitive. That’s why you have to jazz it a bit by coming up with new ways to whine. Sure, it sounds easy. If you’re new to all this you might think all you have to do is be the victim, I mean patient; then spot another victim, also known as the listener and you’re all set to go. It’s much more complex than that. Let me see if I can sum it up for you. I love a list so let’s try that, shall we?
1. Never whine when you’re with someone sicker than you are. They don’t give a rat’s ass and you will find it very unfulfilling.
2. Whining is not a contest but if it were, you’d have to find someone without any problems of their own. Good luck with that. You might as well call in the Raiders of the Lost Ark to go on a sacred quest in order to find another human without problems.
3. Whining is best with a captured audience.
4. That’s why it works best with pets, infants, semi-comatose individuals, the deaf or those who are asleep.
5. Don’t try this with someone who is only partially asleep because, I know from experience, they will only roll over and say, “Huh? Did you say something?” That’s very unfulfilling and could cause you to perform an act of violence.
6. It’s not considered good etiquette to carry a weapon when you’re whining, especially if you’re planning on a long session of droning, which might include fit-throwing and physical upheaval. You might get “carried away.” Then you would certainly be carried away.
7. If you’re going to whine effectively, you can’t include too much stomping around because it may prove to be counter-productive. It makes you look too healthy; which will defeat the purpose.
8. Whining is salesmanship at its most emotional level.
9. Remember your goal is to gain sympathy, not put the “audience” to sleep or alienate them.
10. You’ll know you’ve gone too far when friends and relatives begin to run and hide when they see you coming.
11. Don’t forget the props if you’re planning a long session of complaining. These would include a large handkerchief or an extra large box of Kleenex; no crying towels because they’re too obvious an affectation and give away the “ending.”
12. Visual effects such as canes, walkers and wheelchairs also give it away too soon, but if you must have them, you must. Crawling on the ground is considered bad form and you also have to worry about getting up again. That can be a bit tricky,
especially if you’re left alone. It’s often dirty down there on the floor, at least at my house.
13. I have found the best audience for whining is your own pet. Dogs are best because they have fur you can use to dry your eyes and will usually lick your face afterwards. Cats, unfortunately fit into that “don’t give a rat’s ass” category. I love cats but it’s usually all about “Me, Me, Me” with them.
14. There is a way you can whine to a cat but you have to use your happy voice and stroke them constantly while doing it. That gets tiresome when you’re already in a bad mood. If you become emotional and stroke a cat too vigorously, they will get even with you. This may involve claws out, your blood being spilled and even more for you to whine about. There could also be a great deal of noise from both you and the cat. Screaming by either of you is considered non-productive.
15. You are allowed to whine at the doctor’s office but only if you keep it concise and to the point; otherwise his/her eyes will begin to glaze over and that will affect the doctor’s notes, profoundly.
16. While you’re in a rant at the doctor’s office, they will stop looking at you; pull their computer close and type in what an emotionally unstable patient you are. The words “nut job” will then forever live on your medical records.
17. They will undoubtedly get out their prescription pad and write you a prescription for Zanax or one of the social anxiety drugs.
18. Doctors seldom recommend alcohol as a remedy for the patient who drones on about his or her problems. They may need it themselves when they go home just to get all the buzz of droning in their ears to fade away.
19. Never complain to your veterinarian about yourself. Why do you think they chose a medical profession where the patients don’t talk? They may also try to take your temperature rectally, while you are being held down by two vet assistants. You might get a pedicure or should I say “peticure” out of it but, is it really worth it?
20. Finally, if you must drone on, whine, complain incessantly, do it to music. I prefer NOBODY KNOWS THE TROUBLE I’V SEEN, sung loudly, while I am alone. Find a song that fits you. You might prefer, I’VE GOTTA BE ME or RAINDROPS KEEP FALLING ON MY HEAD. You could also make up your own tune and lyrics.
You see? This whining business can get out of hand, doesn’t accomplish much but seems to squirt out of us anyway. I guess it is part of the human condition. Go with it if you must but make it short, do it less often and always leave ‘em laughing and with hope