Grin and Bear It

Sometimes it takes a little thing to make a big point.

I was at a charity event and while people are still milling around, I overheard a conversation. A woman was complaining about her sinus condition. It turned out that was just the tip of her problems. In just the few minutes I was shamelessly listening in, she went on to say she's lost a fortune in the stock market, her kids never call and New York is going to hell in a hand basket.

She wasn't done.

No sooner were one of her targets out of sight, then she blasted that person. One investment broker with whom she seemed perfectly cordial was a "mindless fool" after he was out of earshot.

She complained and moaned, carped and tweaked, ripped and stung.

I couldn't believe it.

The poor sucker who had somehow got cornered in the room with her seemed perfectly amiable. He politely nodded, but rarely said much. He looked awkward, shy and almost stoic.

People seemed to know him though. They kept asking about his kids. Was he worried? Was he nervous?

The woman seemed oblivious. She had her sinuses to talk about.

She ripped New York. He politely offered the city was surprisingly resilient.

She ripped the war. He said it was a good cause.

She talked up her own ailments. He never once referred to his own very obvious artificial limb.

She mentioned pains. He never mentioned he was a decorated veteran.

She whined. He smiled.

She gossiped. He nodded.

Only when she complained about her kids again, did he offer some insight into his own. He hadn't heard from his either.

"Why's that?" she asked.

Because both of them are in Iraq.

She just walked away. I just shook his hand.

Some people love to complain and do. But it's the ones who could really complain and don't that speak volumes, sometimes, by not speaking at all.

Watch Neil Cavuto's Common Sense weekdays at 4 p.m. ET on Your World with Cavuto.