What are these precious nuggets I have mined?
1. People don't bitch about stuff because they want to see it fixed. Mostly, they just like the sound of their voice, and sympathy is the right response. This is hard to handle given that I'm a "fixer."
2. Ignoring what people say about each other is almost always the right response, especially if what you're hearing is negative. The corollaries to this are:
a. Judge people by what you see of them yourself, that is, by their actions.
b. It is okay to tell people you disagree with their opinions on other people, but doing so 1) could set yourself up for an attack and 2) isn't going to accomplish much. (I, however, have not a lot of restraint in this area due to my strong loyalty to my friends ... which can make things extra exciting in all sorts of bad ways. This is probably a sign the wisdom thing is still developing, or that my mitochondrians are low.)