Coronavirus Diary 41 – A life of being nice doesn’t pay.

A few days ago I had a phone call from the Police.  We ended up talking for around 90 minutes; not just having a chinwag but we were going through a statement about one of the recent crimes I suffered.

I haven’t talked for 90 minutes combined all of the last 2.5 months and was going hoarse by the end of it.  He was a nice chap and we even had a bit of a laugh during proceedings and seemed to agree on almost everything; I’m pretty sure he would come on a Sherlock Holmes Walking Tour given a chance.  He was also shielding and like myself not been out for for months so I guess we both enjoyed the company and I got to hear a bit about the weird things police have to put up with.

We ended up talking about computer systems and how information is stored and how accessible it is for police to get information which the paranoid amongst us always assume was to hand.

The thing I’ve been thinking about the most though is that no records are kept of people who do nice things or help people.  Everyone knows if you do something bad then you end up with a criminal record but there is no such thing as a Good-Deeds record.

I just think that is such an oversight and so typical of how life is.  It’s possible to spend your whole life being good and then one mistake, error of judgement or even bad luck can mean that officially you’re judged as being bad.

I’ve been thinking what a waste of time it has been all the thousands of old people I’ve carried bags for.  Even serious things that go to court, if you’ve done good then no centralised records are held.  Even in the last year I’ve been to court twice for intervening to help someone in a serious crime and in the last few years I’ve stopped a thief in his tracks, caught a shoplifter, tipped off police about someone revealing themselves in front of children, assisted a female police officer with an arrest and various other things.

Wouldn’t society be a little better if records were kept of these things.  I know people rightfully get awards a community project or doing a vital if unfashionable job but what about the people who make the world go round by putting others before themselves?

It would also help with little perks whereas just as now if you have a criminal record you’re often a suspect for things or treated badly by others for good or bad, wouldn’t it be nice if for things like a Coronavirus Vaccine they could look at your record and say “Let’s give it to him, he always gives his seat up for the pregnant lady on the underground train” whereas the person who pretends he’s too busy on his phone to notice has to wait.

Promises of little perks would make people unexpectedly happy and if even a few more people played their part, it would make the world a nicer place.   Maybe even offer official rewards like tax breaks to show that the good people are truly appreciated instead of treated like doormats.

I also find it weird when people die, especially politicians and after a life-time of animosity all of a sudden their opponents pretend they always liked them or praise their works when it is all a little bit too late and we know really they hated them.

Personally I won’t ever say bad things about even people I have good reason not to like but I definitely won’t pretend to like them.   I remember in only my second year of work when there was a pretty obnoxious company director that thought they were amazing, only wanted to talk about themselves and didn’t care about anyone though often pretended they would for short term gain.  One day they were shown the door and they came round the offices and everyone else was all being nice and saying how much they will mis them, me, I didn’t even turn my chair round from the computer.  Why should I be nice to someone who made my life hell?   That’s much the same reason I rarely went to Christmas office parties!

“If only everyone was like you Sir”, the police officer said at the end of the call.  if we had a Good-Deed registry then there might be more of us than we know.  Maybe that is why I have always like the story of  The Recording Angels.

About Stephen Liddell

I am a writer and traveller with a penchant for history and getting off the beaten track. With several books to my name including a #1 seller, I also write environmental, travel and history articles for magazines as well as freelance work. Recently I've appeared on BBC Radio and Bloomberg TV and am waiting on the filming of a ghost story on British TV. I run my own private UK tours company (Ye Olde England Tours) with small, private and totally customisable guided tours run by myself!
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13 Responses to Coronavirus Diary 41 – A life of being nice doesn’t pay.

  1. Ankur Mithal says:

    Now that is a thought. But I wonder if people who talk more, like your erstwhile company director, always talking highly about themselves, would have a better chance of getting into it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. conniefromla says:

    Great ideas. I always enjoy your honesty and thoughtfulness.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. thepoliblog says:

    The Good-Deeds Record is kept by Santa.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. So true Stephen! That is amazing and very admirable that you did all of that to intervene when baf stuff was happening. It would be great if there was a good deeds registry, I agree. Also, if the news focused on good things, all of us would probably be more optimistic in our outlook.

    Liked by 1 person

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