The least you can do

I remember the first time a cousin featured in a movie. His screen time was not even up to a second, yet we celebrated like he was the main character. We analysed that short screen time like it was the whole movie. I do not even remember what the movie was about, but I remember his role.

I also remember how I waited to see his name on the ascending credits at the end of the movie. It was the only name that mattered.

We pay attention to what we care about, and it becomes our prevailing reality.

Now, when I watch a movie, I always look out for the people in the background. Someone is celebrating that appearance somewhere in the world. That one second screen time is someone’s source of untold joy and pride.

When the credits at the end of the movie hurry up, someone cannot wait to see their name or the name of a loved one. Even when it is planted in a mosaic of other names, the name that is important to you stands out.

The leading and supporting roles in movies matter, but with a little reflection, you realise that all roles matter. It does not matter whether you appreciate all roles or not. Someone is celebrating a part of the movie you did not even notice. Someone is celebrating a role you do not even know exists.

This reality is true for life. Not everyone is the main character, but everyone is important to someone and celebrated by someone. Which is why the least you can do is respect everyone.

– Osasu Oviawe

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