Why it never pays to make fun of someone else’s misfortune

Aasma Day, Lancashire Evening Post Health Correspondent
Aasma Day, Lancashire Evening Post Health Correspondent
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I’ve always been a great believer in karma ... long before I ever heard John Lennon warbling his warning about “Instant Karma’s gonna get you”.

Or more accurately, should I say that I’m a firm believer in “If you make fun of someone or laugh at another’s misfortune, it’s going to come back and bite you in the backside.”

Or even, “What goes around, comes around.”

I learnt from an early age that if you make fun of someone else’s bad luck, chances are you’ll get your comeuppance sooner rather than later.

One of my earliest memories is cackling with cruel mirth after my sister stepped in a mound of fresh dog poo and got it all over her new school shoes.

As she desperately tried to scrape it off on the side of the pavement, I was so busy throwing my head back in laughter, I completely missed the huge pile of dog poo in front of me – until I squelched my own feet in it. Yuk.

As the years passed, karma became more food related.

I remember laughing so hard, I almost choked on my drink after a school friend dropped a bowl of soup all over her school uniform one lunchtime.

Only minutes later, the laughter was on the other side of the table after I accidentally leaned on my pudding bowl and splattered myself with jam roly poly and custard.

Food karma can be good as well as bad.

One of my friends from university was in a horrendously long queue at McDonald’s and saw an old man eventually reach the queue only to discover he had forgotten his wallet.

As the old man’s face dropped in disappointment as he asked to cancel his order and made to go, the young man stood behind him stepped in and said: “Don’t worry, I’ll get it” and paid the cashier.

As the grateful elderly man stammered his thanks and asked for the lad’s address so he could get the money back to him, the bloke waved him away and said: “Don’t worry about it, it’s only a couple of quid.”

Impressed at the fella’s kindness towards a total stranger, my friend struck up a conversation with him and told him what a lovely thing he had done.

Several years later, they got married – and had a great tale to tell on their wedding day.

Steve said it was the best couple of quid he had ever spent.

As the years have passed even further still, I have found that a lot of karma witnessed by me these days is connected to cars.

Nothing beats seeing arrogant and terrible motorists getting instant karma after acting like they own the road.

Who can resist smiling after some prat in a flash Porsche cuts you up – only to see him get pulled over for speeding a few minutes later.

One of my personal favourites is when a car comes speeding past you at 90 miles an hour, but 30 seconds later you meet them at the traffic lights.

This never ceases to entertain me.

Car karma struck at our household recently.

Now it might have taken me five goes before I passed my driving test, but I am generally a good driver.

I have always driven small cars which are nice and nippy, I don’t have a speeding ticket to my name nor have I ever been involved in an accident which was my fault.

However, I was involved in a slight mishap the other week which involved a third party – a lamp post.

In my usual frantic race to get to school in time to pick up the children, I found myself all flustered and panicked after getting stuck in traffic.

To save a few minutes, I tried to get as close to the school gates as possible and was delighted when I spotted a space.

I quickly angled my car into it. However, a middle aged woman in a big 4x4 glowered at me and I realised she had also had her eye on the same space, but hadn’t been as quick as me.

To save any bad feeling, after a quick glance behind me, I deduced that there was enough room for the two of us if I backed up.

Sticking my car into reverse, I whizzed backwards – only to hear a huge bang as I whacked into the lamp post, which I hadn’t realised was so close to the kerb.

My bump left me feeling a bit shaken and my poor little car has a hurt in the shape of a dent. But the most injured thing was my pride.

I called Hubby up to tell him about the damage and he took it quite well, but was unable to resist the temptation of teasing my mercilessly.

As well as making numerous digs about how on earth did I manage to hit a stationary lamp post and how the lamp post “must have jumped into my way”, he also took to nicknaming me “Cruncher”.

I handled his teasing with good grace.

And this week I resisted the urge to say: “Hah ha” when Hubby’s week didn’t get off to the greatest start.

As he was leaving our home to drive to work, he swerved into the bushes to avoid some cars parked on our neighbour’s drive – only to find himself come a cropper with a branch which left a crease in his car.

Although I was a suitably sympathetic wife when he told me about his disaster, I couldn’t resist asking: “How’s your car, Cruncher?” when he got home from work.

That’s Car-ma for you!