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Damaging Other Peoples' Property

was

Explorer
...I washed the car then went grocery shopping today. While shopping, someone put a decent - sized scratch in one of the doors on my car. I drove to the dealer and got some paint to touch it up. Even with the touch-up, it looks lousy.
...I don't know if I was more upset about the scratch itself or that the person didn't apologize for doing it. Is it really realistic anymore to expect people to take responsibilty for damaging others' property? Or is it just me showing my age?
 

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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
It IS a realistic expectation, but it does show your age.

I'm old enough to have gone through several "car ding" events in my life, and owned up to my responsibility- if any- to all but one. Likewise, almost every ding delivered to a car has been apologized for.

Most people are civil enough to take that responsibility, IME. Fewer today than 20 years ago, but still the majority, I think.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Yeah. It's happened several times to me.

Problem is, at least over here, the blame culture has spread to the extent where you're conditioned not to own up.

I remember when it would have involved an apology and perhaps a few quid exchanged. Now it involves insurance companies and forms and claims and losing no claims bonuses and - ultimately - bad feeling as two people spend several months of precious time trying to game a system with half truths to avoid ridiculous long term insurance costs.
 

trancejeremy

First Post
Eh. My elderly great uncle would do this all the time. He drove a huge car and would just fling his door open, almost always slamming into the car next to him. I don't think it's anything new.

This is why people with nice cars often park far away from the entrance to stores, hoping no one will park next to them.
 

was

Explorer
This is why people with nice cars often park far away from the entrance to stores, hoping no one will park next to them.

...I was parked pretty far out of the way, "in the back 40" as we say here, so I was surprised to get dinged. Now the touchup paint won't set cause the temps too cold. :erm: At least I get to game tomorrow.:)
 


Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Is it really realistic anymore to expect people to take responsibilty for damaging others' property? Or is it just me showing my age?

I don't know that it was ever actually realistic to expect it. The past was not some golden place where everyone, or even many, apologized for things they did wrong.
 


Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
XP for the thread title.

And I'll refer you to this interesting experiment involving having too many peers around:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_B._Calhoun#Mouse_experiments

Interesting, but I have a *major* question about it.

Note that the gestation period for mice is a whopping 20 days, on average. By day 600, we are talking something on the order of 30 generations, starting from four breeding pairs.

How much of the result was due to population pressure and filled social roles, and how much due to inbreeding?

This does, however, illustrate where the "Secret of NIMH" came from. :)
 

Ryujin

Adventurer
Sociopathy and narcissism seem to be rather rampant these days. I've actually been sitting in my car and had people throw their car doors open into mine, then get angry at me for calling them on it.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Sociopathy and narcissism seem to be rather rampant these days.

I don't know. It seems more to me the words "sociopath" and "narcissist" are leaking into common parlance, and getting overused.

Both those terms have definitions that are well beyond, "You seemed to be selfish in my one interaction with you as a stranger."
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
I would substitute "anti-social" and "self-centered" in most cases- accurate enough without the clinical/criminal connotations.
 

Ryujin

Adventurer
I don't know. It seems more to me the words "sociopath" and "narcissist" are leaking into common parlance, and getting overused.

Both those terms have definitions that are well beyond, "You seemed to be selfish in my one interaction with you as a stranger."

Well given the number of people I run into these days who seem to have zero empathy and are self fixated, I'd say that the usage is accurate.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Well given the number of people I run into these days who seem to have zero empathy and are self fixated, I'd say that the usage is accurate.

Well, you see, that's the thing - when you see them is not the whole of their lives. They probably don't have zero empathy. They just aren't displaying empathy towards you, when you are dealing with them. They have people in their lives they care about, and very likely even care about strangers, too.

There is a hefty, hefty tendency towards confirmation bias - we remember the things that confirm what we already think, or want to believe. We tend to forget, or discount, the thousands of times those things don't happen. People say, "Excuse me," or "Oops, sorry," recognizing the difficulty they give others all the time.

The people who are walking away from the dinged car aren't usually being sociopathic. They are avoiding a confrontation with a person they know will be angry. That's rather the opposite of lacking in empathy - they know darned full well you'll be mad, and fear consequences. And since leaving is so, so easy, they do that. Avoidance behavior is not sociopathic.

That is, if they've even noticed they've dinged your car at all.
 



Janx

Hero
Will your insurance not cover a proper repaint?

just about any body part with a dent is going to be $700-$1500 to hammer it out and repaint.

deductible is likely $500. So the OP would have to pay $500 for a scratch.

It's not worth the money to fix because a body does the same repaint routine regardless of size of damage.
 


SkidAce

Hero
Supporter
If they ding mine I will have to suck up the deductible and get it fixed immediately...just sayin'

Mine.jpg
 


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