The Bible says a soft answer turneth away wrath. Not to put the onus on Oulson, but had he quietly terminated his text and ignored Reeves as best he could, the situation might have de-escalated with no gunshots or lost popcorn. I tend to practice that course on the highway, backing off as fast as possible from idiot drivers instead of confronting them at potentially lethal highway speeds. And now it looks as though it will be a good idea to bite my tongue in the theater as well instead of giving in to temptation to tell somebody to turn off their annoying phone.
As life continues to get more hectic at breakneck speed, more people find themselves unable to cope. The result, fortunately infrequent but more instantly communicated, is often violent retaliation for real or imagined slights that make no sense at all in the real world.
Jim Bailey’s column appears on Thursday. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.