Yesterday at 5:24 I posted the following on social media:  And we're in hour 2 of the car alarm.  If you're looking to purchase an Acura, don't buy the white one parked in the northwest corner of the back lot.  (For the record, I'm talking about DCH Acura Montclair even though it's not in Montclair.)  As long as the dealership has been around (and let me make it clear that my house and I have been here much longer than the dealership), we've had issues with car alarms.  Sales used to activate the alarm during business hours to locate a vehicle (a problem which has pretty much been rectified thanks to recent management changes at the dealership), but more annoying is when car alarms randomly go off late at night/early morning when no one is on site.  (It is my personal opinion that they should have a security person on site overnight, but that's probably NOT going to happen.)  It is not frequent, probably two to three times a year, which is more than enough especially when it happens during the warmer months and our windows are open.  (Yes, I believe in open windows and fresh air).  The horn echoes and carries (as it should).  If someone was attempting to steal the car off the lot (which is rarely the reason for the alarm going off; at least as far as I know), I'd think they'd run.  Or maybe not.

Car alarms are loud and annoying.  They are meant to deter theft.  But do they?  If you are out and about and you hear a car alarm what do you do?  Do you immediately call the police?  Do you go investigate?  Or do you ignore it?  I'm guessing the majority of us ignore because we are so used to (and annoyed) by the noise.  In my experience, more often than not, the alarm is going off because someone hit the wrong button when getting in the car.  (Or am I the only guilty party for this?)  However, when a car alarm goes off late at night or early morning; they are impossible to ignore.  I would hazard to guess (based on the topography of my area and the time), that the sound carried down to the center of town (not quite a mile away).  Generally (and thankfully), our community is relatively quiet during overnight areas, so when the sound of a car alarm pierces the air it is impossible to ignore. (Or try to sleep through.)  Having dealt with this (occasional) issue for over a decade, I know what the process and procedure for dealing with the situation (which is frustrating).  I'm sure most of my neighbors do too.

Believe it or not, this post (which I am two paragraphs into), is really NOT about car alarms.  It's about assumptions.  When I made my social media post, several people immediately assumed that I had taken no other action.  Whether I did or not is immaterial; what matters is the assumption that I did not.   

Making assumptions without checking or making inquiries, is a real problem in our society.  While just about anyone can post just about anything on social media that post is rarely paints the full picture.  Sometimes it's not even true.

We need to remember the old adage:  

We teach our children this, we need to remember it ourselves.

 I used this car alarm story, which is not at all important in the scheme of things, as an example.  Did I call the police?  Did I just post of social media?  Did I lie in my bed in fume?  Was it a combination of all these things?  You don't know.  You didn't ask and I didn't tell.  Don't ASSume.  (Yes, that was intentional...I couldn't help myself.)

 Making assumptions may be human nature, however, we can take the time to stop ourselves.  To ask the question or check the source BEFORE making a judgement call.  Doing so can turn you (and your comment) into an ASSET instead of an ass.



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