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Cowboys & You’re welcome…

Every day I say, “Thank you” to someone.  I bet you do too.  Of course, the common response in our modern era is, “No problem”.  Where did that come from?  What ever happened to, “You’re welcome”?

When someone says, “No problem”, that implies, “It wasn’t a problem for me that I did something for you that caused you to say Thank you”.  Well OK, if the something done to stimulate my “Thank you” was done for kindness reasons.

The problem I’m having with “No problem” is the typical context is not kindness-based, but rather courtesy-based.  And in that context, “You’re welcome” is the more courteous response, yes?

Maybe we should follow our cowboy heritage.  I’m fascinated by cowboys and the traditions of the American West.  The cowboy image carries with it attributes of ruggedness; strength; bravery; and courtesy, true?  A tip of their hat; a polite, “Ma’am”; a soft “You’re welcome” in response to “Thank you”.

I’m referring to actual cowboys; working men; rodeoers.  Not we city folk who like to dress up in boots, belt buckles, and B.S.

The cowboy way can make a difference in our lives; like my son Kevin has in mine.  We celebrated his birthday last weekend – I hope you enjoy this little present I gave him years ago from the opening to chapter seven of my book, The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©.

Chapter VII:  Cowboy Up – You’ll Get Through It!

Dedicated to the American Cowboy – may we all learn to be more like them.

Now, I’m no cowboy; but I know one.

Cowboys are quiet, polite – men of few words; comfortable just listening while others around them bark at the moon nonstop.

No, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve heard one.

Cowboys have a reserve of strength far and above the average person – physical strength to be sure; but also great emotional strength.

I’m definitely no cowboy; but I’ve seen one.

Cowboys have the ability to remain in control even while every living thing around them, man and beast, spooks in mortal fear.

True, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve been protected by one.

Cowboys remain focused even with adrenaline rushing through their veins when they’re bull riding, or racing flat out, one-handed on horseback, to rope an escaping calf.

Yes, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve lived with one.

Cowboys are fearless especially at the age of 15 when they look down in the shoot and prepare to mount a bare back bucking bronco at their very first high school rodeo competition.

Absolutely, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve filmed one looking down that very shoot.

Cowboys always believe they can.  The cowboy feels that sigh of relief when he’s all twisted up in the dirt, having fallen off a stumbling horse and the rodeo announcer comes on the PA system and says, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.”

So, I’m no cowboy, but I’ve sat next to his Mother in the stands when we heard that Rodeo Announcer come over the P.A. System to say, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.” And as the announcer glanced down to the stands to see her reaction he quickly added, “But his Mother says NO!”

You see, I know a lot about cowboys.  That’s why I’m so sure I’m not one.  No, I’m no cowboy, but my son Kevin is.  And every day I try to be a little bit more like him.

Thank you for being you, Kevin!  Luv, Dad.

GAP

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4 Comments


  1. Michael
    Nov 20, 2015

    Hey Gary, Boy, you nailed it with this one. The response I most commonly get when I say ‘thank you’ to someone in the younger generation is, ‘of course’. It renders the appreciation I expressed meaningless. Like ‘no problem’, it infers that the courtesy would have been extended regardless and that my gratitude was unnecessary. I wonder how they would respond if I said, ‘it’s about time’ or some other ungrateful comment. ‘Thanks for nothing.’ ‘No problem!’


    • Gary
      Nov 25, 2015

      Thanks for noticing Michael – and obviously – I couldn’t agree with you more. Your comments are meaningful to me 🙂 Thx, GAP


  2. Kenton Johnson
    Nov 29, 2015

    This is a pet peeve as a customer. When I hear “no problem” from a provider, I wonder if it has been or will be a “problem” servicing me. Often I say to someone who sounds like they need training, “Of course, I’M the customer.”

    This is similar slang or inaccuracy to hear on a provider’s voicemail greeting, “I’ll get back to you at my earliest CONVENIENCE” – I hope s/he means OPPORTUNITY, but maybe not. Makes me wonder if there’s any intent to call back, or serve the customer. Thanks for the post.


    • Gary
      Dec 01, 2015

      Thank you for commenting Kenton! This topic seemed to hit a nerve with many of us 🙂 Thx, GAP

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