California is screwed.

Politics aside, California is screwed. I'm not talking about how people vote. I'm just talking about people in general. I'm talking about the clear downward trend of quality people in our society. People are so incredibly selfish. Nobody thinks of others anymore. There was a time when people were genuinely kind, when people were courteous while driving, and when people were friendly in everyday encounters.

Today was a breaking point for me. I witnessed two people fighting over position in line for a gas pump. An oblivious person backed into me with his car. I was cut off by a driver while I walked through a parking lot (I guess pedestrians don't have the right-of-way anymore). I was almost hit by a guy running a red light. I was almost hit by another person making a right turn who failed to stop and look before turning.

Far too many people think the hands-free calling law means they can hold their phone on speakerphone. Nobody turns their head when changing lanes and nobody signals. People are so distracted by their cell phones that those of us who aren't distracted have to look out for them and guide them back into their lanes by the occasional honk of the horn.

I intentionally seek out stores with positive, friendly cashiers. It makes the experience exponentially better. There was a time when people waved to each other while driving through neighborhoods, and when strangers would engage in friendly small talk. I am disappointed that I never got to experience that culture here.

Of course, it's not like this everywhere. In fact most of America is still relatively friendly. The pace of life is just different.

But in terms of California, I don't see things ever getting better. It's still every man for himself. And unless people realize that we're all in this together and no one is so important that they can't be friendly, courteous and polite, California will continue down this spiral and continue to become a less and less enjoyable place to live.