The other night I got mad at a lady in a Walgreen’s parking lot. MAD.
I needed a couple of things. There’s one a couple blocks away. (it’s SO strange to live in town now where you can just go down the street for something and be back in just a minute or two. love this.)
I came out of the store with my bag and a lady in the car parked a few spaces over started yelling at me, asking if I could help her. I yelled back, asking her what she needed, without going any closer. She started her story. It was a tragic tale of a woman leaving a husband who mistreated her.
I had no patience for that crap.
Sure, I’m a sympathetic, go ahead and con me in a parking lot type. I know it. But not this time. I could not STAND this woman. She was icking me out from three parking spaces away. She said that she was just like me. She waved a hand at my car and said, “I’m a respectable lady just like you are.” She was slurring, I might add.
I told her she was making two very wrong assumptions there, about both of us. Her confusion showed clearly on her face. I didn’t explain. I wished her well, turned to leave and THEN she made some bizarre racist comment about a group of people I have NO idea how they ended up in that conversation. I went OFF. From ACROSS A PARKING LOT. Yelling. Waving arms. Stomping feet in boots, partly because I was freezing and partly because I was just offended all the way down to my toes.
I don’t like it when strangers talk to me. Especially strange, slurring strangers. But I REALLY hate it when strangers make incorrect assumptions about who I am or what I believe and then have the nerve to say so to my face. Gets me every time.
The truth is, VERY few people know me. (y’all do. I mean Real Life Types.)
This pet peeve is what almost got me in trouble at the courthouse a couple weeks back. (why, no. thank you for asking, but it was NOT divorce related this courthouse trip. NOT divorce related because no, i am still NOT divorced. Maybe soon. Maybe not. It’s impossible to know. I will be all shouty when it does happen though, so don’t think you’ll miss that news bulletin when it is finally warranted.)
I had gone to the courthouse to get an assumed name certificate thingy. For a business. Not for me. not because I was divorced and therefore changing my name or anything like that. NO, COURSE NOT. Just business. And the guard at the courthouse smiled at me when I set off the metal detector and told me with a face like that I was clearly harmless and he has a granddaughter that reminds him of me.
OH. HELL. NO. IS HE TRYING TO MAKE ME GO OFF?!
Don’t talk to me like that! I set off a metal detector. Without even TRYING. Just with the steely glint in my right eye, and that thing started beeping. I am a FORCE. I am wearing a GIANT coat several sizes too large that I love and I LIVE IN IT every winter because it is SO warm and you have NO IDEA if I’m hiding an arsenal underneath here, buddy. Don’t patronize me and assume I’m safe. I am crazy dangerous when I want to be and you do NOT want to see my left hook. It’s killer good.
I said something far short of all of that. But it was definitely a protest. And he said, “Yeah, now you REALLY remind me of my granddaughter. Miss, I am a guard at a government building and you do not want to convince me that you aren’t as harmless as you look. DO YOU?”
Actually, that’s EXACTLY what I wanted to do. Because don’t ASSUME I’m something I’m not. don’t be all patronizing and awful and unprofessional and WRONG. It just makes me want to scream at you. In a Walgreen’s parking lot. Or at the security checkpoint in a government office.
DON’T MESS WITH ME LIKE THAT.
Ignore me, please, I like it – but do NOT do that.
AHH. You know what it is? It’s that I work pretty hard to keep my distance from people. And here comes some stranger making stupid, wrong, spontaneous dumb conclusions as if I HAVEN’T successfully built all those gorgeously impenetrable walls…? It’s infuriating. It’s as if I’m there, in a brand new Invisibility Cloak, and someone comes up and starts talking to me like they can see me, and like I’m actually my cat.
#1. YOU CAN’T SEE ME. I HAVE ON A NEW INVISIBILITY CLOAK.
#2 YOU ARE DUMB. I LOOK NOTHING LIKE MY CAT.
#3. Okay, I’m stopping. Just, like, because. I’m tired. And this is getting weird, even for here.
I want chocolate, a diet coke, and a divorce, right this second, and I can’t have any of it.