Sunday, August 14, 2011

Don't touch me

Disclaimer:  I'm unloading a rant on you all.  Like that's anything new.

I left the house in a pretty bad mood earlier.  Don't ask why, I'm not entirely sure where it all went downhill from the time I woke up totally happy, but spiral downward it did.

It was a list of simple errands I was crossing off to do before the start of work/school tomorrow.  Pet store, pedicure and pharmacy.  Simple, right?  No.  Wrong.   I mind my own business in public.  If someone smiles at me or addresses me for some reason, I am kind at best and civil at the very least… probably about 90% of the time.   Today tells me that I should really rethink that whole life strategy.

Look, I'm the queen of making small talk when I have to be.   I can find something to talk about with a brick wall.  That doesn't mean I want to.  I believe everyone should have a 'social use' word limit and if you go over, you should shut the hell up for the rest of the day.  Now, I'm not complaining because people spoke to me.  I'm pissed because two different people TOUCHED me today.  On purpose.  Strangers.   That is so off putting I don't know what to do with myself.

Minding my business at the pet store, a man put his hand on my shoulder while asking me how many pets I have.  Raise your hand if you've ever heard the term 'personal space'.   Yep, I thought so.  My kid even knows it.  This is not ok.  Don't touch me.

While getting my pedicure, a woman that was seated next to me in the salon grabbed my arm and yanked it closer to her so that she could see my tattoos.   Then she decided to ask me five million questions and even though she received a look that ought to have killed and bordering on my worst demeanor and tone, she just kept on flapping those gums.   The kicker of the whole thing is that she had permanent stink face, nose wrinkled and everything as she kept proclaiming how she didn't understand why people did that to their bodies.  There was an actual moment when I thought someone was playing a joke on me, and that quickly turned into such blind fury that I was scared I was going to get arrested for punching her in the face.  As I replay the entire scenario over and over in my head, I simply can't work out what would make this behavior acceptable in someone's mind.  Seriously, don't touch me.  Matter of fact, don't even talk to me.  There's no reason for it.

FOR FUCK'S SAKE.  What happened to the days where I was so unapproachable that people may stare at me from afar but would rather poke their eyes out with a stick than come near me?   Yeah, I want a piece of those days back.   My approachability factor really needs work.  I've swung too far over to the other side, apparently.

Side note:  I give people a lot of rope before freaking out.  I'm no cold fish, either.  I am quite possibly the most affectionate and touchy/feely person  I know amongst my friends.  I have no issue whatsoever with physical contact between myself and those in my circle.

I'm not entirely sure what is so difficult to understand about this stuff.
If you don't know me, don't touch me.
If you know me on a strictly professional level, don't touch me.
If I'm ok with you touching me, you'd be an idiot to not know it… you can touch me.
Simple, right?
People are total morons.


  1. I think I'll agree agree with you. Time to cut back on the social niceties if only for the sake of trying to avoid incidents like these. I'm going to admit, this is a huge pet peeve of mine. Personal space between strangers should be a given. Unfortunately, some people are oblivious. I have had similar situations with strangers touching me, and it usually results in me coming off as an insane bitch. So be it. The worst incident happened when this filthy crotchety old woman came up in the grocery store and stuck her finger in my newborn baby's hand. She's lucky she didn't lose an eye.

    I can't believe that snatch in the salon. Who behaves that badly?! How fucking rude! Sorry you had to deal with that. I'm agitated just reading about it, let alone experiencing it.

  2. Totally agree.
    I'm kinda tactile with people I know, and I am the type of person who strikes up conversations with strangers - but don't touch.

    Long time ago I had dreads in my hair and the world and his fucking wife seemed to think it was fine to touch them. Actually punched a few people over that.

  3. Ms. Peril: <3

    DCG: I'm telling you. It's something about dreads. I had them in my late teens and they were a magnet for some. Kind of like a pregnant belly… folks take it as an open invitation to touch. Baffling.

  4. Did I ever tell you about the middle-aged man (50's) in a pub who said to me...

    "Come and sit over here."

    I say:

    "Nah, I'm okay over here."

    He gets up, grabs my arm and YANKS me over to him, wraps his arms around me tightly and says:

    "I SAID come HERE you DIRTY little thing."

    No. It wasn't even a gay bar. I was about 35 at the time.

  5. HA! You never told me that story. But I have a vivd image in my head of it and it's made me giggle over my tea this morning. I never realized that was an effective way to make you do something you're resistant to. Mental note made.


  6. I've had that crap happen to me in the office before, at some previous jobs. I remember one lady co-worker even came up behind me while I was working on something and started massaging my shoulders. Um, thanks but no thanks. And of course I look like the asshole for telling people like that not to touch me.

    As for the lady who grabbed your arm to look at the tattoos and asked questions, I would have said "Actually, they're there to conceal the leprosy. You really shouldn't have touched right there."