The Grumblers and the Busy Beings

There are two types of people in this world, and it’s not those who like Neil Diamond and those who don’t for you “What About Bob” fans. No, I am referring to those who Grumble and those who are Busy Being. If you haven`t heard of the “Grumblers” and the “Busy Beings” before, let me explain them to you.

Let’s start with those who Grumble.  One of my favorite book series was written by author Lucy Maud Montgomery, who wrote the Anne of Green Gables books. My Grandma Pearson bought me her books when I was a young girl and I absolutely loved them!  Ms. Montgomery wrote a fabulous poem about the Grumble Family:

The Grumble Family

There’s a family nobody likes to meet;
They live, it is said, on Complaining Street
In the city of Never-Are-Satisfied,
The River of Discontent beside.

They growl at that and they growl at this;
Whatever comes, there is something amiss;
And whether their station be high or humble,
They are all known by the name of grumble.

The weather is always too hot or cold;
Summer and winter alike they scold.
Nothing goes right with the folks you meet
Down on that gloomy Complaining Street.

They growl at the rain and they growl at the sun;
In fact, their growling is never done.
And if everything pleased them, there isn’t a doubt
They’d growl that they’d nothing to grumble about!

But the queerest thing is that not one of the same
Can be brought to acknowledge his family name;
For never a Grumbler will own that he
Is connected with it at all, you see.

The worst thing is that if anyone stays
Among them too long, he will learn their ways;
And before he dreams of the terrible jumble
He’s adopted into the family of Grumble.

And so it were wisest to keep our feet
From wandering into Complaining Street;
And never to growl, whatever we do,
Lest we be mistaken for Grumblers, too.

Let us learn to walk with a smile and song,
No matter if things do sometimes go wrong;
And then, be our station high or humble,
We’ll never belong to the family of Grumble!

Next up is those people who are Busy Being, and this next poem describes perfectly those type of people:


If you were busy being kind,
Before you knew it you would find
You’d soon forget to think ’twas true
That someone was unkind to you.

It you were busy being glad
and cheering people who seem sad,
Although your heart might ache a bit,
You’d soon forget to notice it.

If you were busy being good,
And doing just the best you could,
You’d not have time to blame some man
Who’s doing just the best he can.

If you were busy being true
To what you know you ought to do,
You’d be so busy you’d forget
The blunders of the folks you’ve met.

If you were busy being right,
You’d find yourself too busy quite
To criticize your brother long,
Because he’s busy being wrong.

Such different groups of people, the Grumblers and the Busy Beings.  And what a contrast there is in their happiness levels in life.   If you look in the mirror and are honest with yourself, which group would you say you belong to today?   Which group would you say you usually belong to most days?  All I know is that when I stop and consider which group I want to be a part of it is without question the group that is Busy Being.  They just sound so much happier!  And so I will try and remember today to be kind, be glad, be good, be true, and most important to be the best being that I can possibly be.



1 Comment

  • Andrew Douglas says:

    Darryl Ashton poet has published this poem, in 2015 after adding a couple of lines and is claiming it as his work.

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