Posts Tagged ‘irritations’

I see people…everywhere…

August 18, 2009

I had a good sleep last night.
Surprisingly so considering what happened just a few short hours before that.

I went to an album launch….which is part and parcel of my job really…nothing out of the ordinary… in fact during my days as an out and out journalist for a certain “scandal” magazine, I was at a function 4/5 evening a week. I knew the scene, I knew the people.

But last night… it was different.

First, more on the History lesson….

When it comes to going out, one of my worst fears is when an invite includes a partner, or a plus one. Its not about finding a “date”…its about knowing im not alone….which I almost always am.

Two years ago, there was someone I used to bring with me to functions for a few months at least, and the evenings always became about the drama between us, and the repercussions lasted for days.

Eventually, when things became so bad, I shut myself off from the world. I stopped going out, and didn’t go anywhere… even to my friends functions… if I did, it was a guest appearance.

Over the last two years, I’ve become so much happier….at the expense of a social life…
If I want to go out, say to a movie… I got to the late show, when I am the ONLY one in the cinema. (Irritation sets in if there is even just one other person in the cinema)

If I go CD/DVD shopping, I always pretend I’m talking on my cell phone so that no assistant will come and ask me if they can help…..in fact… I will create an elaborate discussion with myself on the phone…complete with making up names, and storylines as I go on with the conversation.

As I say, I’m happier, I really am, I’m not the moody, miserable git I used to be. And the simple reasoning for this, is I avoid people…people who disappoint, hurt and irate me. Is this my fear about meeting new people?

Maybe it’s a safety mechanism I have build up….but you know what…it works.

For years now, I have not gone out to social functions. I’ve made excuses, I’ve ignored invites and I’ve simply just avoided putting myself in those situations.

Then, over the last 2 or 3 months, I’ve felt myself somewhat motivated. My creativity and drive has returned (as evident by my plethora of blogs), I’ve started becoming my own person again, daring to be different, dressing like I used to, feeling good dammit.

I know the exact reason behind all that, I know exactly what’s been motivating me. This time I’ve been smart enough to know how to deal with it.

Then last night…..

I decided, last minute, to venture out into the big bad world again, I felt ready to be myself again. I had my concerns, but I really felt I was ok to be around new people….

The function for all intensive purposes was well organized, well attended and pleasant (I’m sure). I however, am not one to stick out in a crowd. I am jut naturally someone who draws attention, whether it be my look or my vibe (only you can answer that), which makes it impossible for me to become inconspicuous.

At the function, I immediately noticed heads turning and looking at me (I blame my new awesome curly moustache for that though), and already panic was setting in.

Saying my hellos to people I knew, I quickly made my way outside for air. Only to be followed by a stranger who clearly was up for conversation…

He opened up with the ironic words of “you look lost buddy”…..

I made the rookie mistake of talking back to him.

Then he engaged in a conversation all about his career and electronics store.
Torture.

As the crowd began to fill up, I began panicking even more.

I ordered an orange juice at the bar, and the bartender in his condescending tone, look down on me and said “really?, I don’t think we have”, and then proceeded to list the juices they do actually have once I realized I was serious.

“Idiots! They all idiots!” is what I kept thinking to myself….arrogant I know… but lets be honest…most of that crowd was. With some notable exceptions – who know who they are.

I couldn’t stand still…I walked up and down….eventually…after about an hour… I cracked… I had to leave…the function hadn’t even started yet, but I just couldn’t anymore.

I snuck out and left. (I won’t even go into detail about my parking ticket irritation that followed.)

Why did I put myself in that situation?
I know why, and I would do it again and again for that exact reason…because for this reason, I would try to become a better person without question.

I prefer my hermit life…it makes me happier… lonelier …but happier.
Thanks for reading…but now I have to get back to my research on social disorders, Agoraphobia and Panic Disorders.

oh and also…about that movie premiere on Wednesday night…(plus finding a plus 1 is going to be fun).

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You know what I hate…(the 2nd in a series)

August 10, 2009

I enjoy driving in general. I could drive non stop for days. Despite the heavy traffic we experience here in South Africa. I do find a good long drive very therapeutic.

However, I am finding this a less and less enjoyable experience these days, and its no longer simply because of the life shortening experience of sharing the road with Taxis. There is another irritation that is quickly pushing me to complete meltdown.

One day…just one single day…I would love to be able to take a drive and not be hassled by someone trying to sell me something at a special price, or giving someone all the litter in my car for free for all my small change, or be forced to dodge blind man walking down the middle of the road.

This is the world I want to live in.
Seems simple enough doesn’t it? But our rapid decline into a third world won’t allow me such pleasure.

No, no, instead I’ll be forced to be riddled with guilt for not wanting to take a free lighter (only ten bucks for 3). Or not being able to donate money to the struggling blind musician….on every corner for the next 5 blocks.

Now, our street vendors are not like those fun loving hot dog vendors you would find on a New York pavement (*enters flashback mode….sigh*), our “street vendors” are far more intrusive than that.

I’m all for newspaper vendors, these guys are providing a service of which people actually benefit from: the daily news. Even pamphlet distributors can pass (depending solely on their attitude of course), I don’t mind throwing out a mountain of pamphlets from witch doctors services to car tune up, if they are handed out in the right spirit.

BUT!

On any given day of driving in Johannesburg, you will be forced to contend with a selection of the following, standing directly in the road, forcing you to swerve, break suddenly or quickly (yet discretely) roll up your window:

– Pirated DVDs of the latest movies on circuit

– Battery operated toys – i.e Winnie the Poohs with real walking action, jumping bunny rabbits and my favourite, Puppies with bobbing head action. These are particularly impressive because the vendors actually give us a demonstration how quickly their rabbit can walk across the road before the traffic light changes.

– A World Globe/ Map – available in a selection of sizes, perfect for those who trying to find Carmen Sandiego whilst driving

– Stun guns – you know, because sometime when you’re headed to work, it suddenly dawns on you that you’ve left yours at home.

– Lighters : “For free chief”, and if you take one then they give you the price….seriously try it next time.

– Biltong (beef jerky) sold by vendors who proudly wear a sign saying “Please support me, I don’t do crime”….Mmm, I’m going to try that on HR tomorrow.

– Other notable items such as rubbish bags, those bricks used to scrape your heels – at least that’s what it appears they are used for by the vendors actions, model ships of the HMS Bounty, and a selection of blow-up items.

What tends to irritate me most about these “salesmen” is their aggression. I generally get more irritated with those who stick their fist in my window and ask me to bump knuckles homeboy style. I don’t drive to make friends or to start a posse…

Oh, and another thing…there are generally about four or five people at the robot selling the EXACT same goods. So let’s try figure this out…if I say no to the first three of your mates…WHY IN JAMES FRANCO’S NAME WOULD I BUY FROM THE FOURTH.

In the words of every girl I’ve asked out, “No means NO!”

Now bear (bare) in mind these are just the guys who are actually trying to sell something. So kudos for business initiative (read syndicate), but then we get those guys who simply just want money….

Another list.

– Blind Africans (usually imports from neighboring African countries), buddied up with a conniving local who guides them up and down the roads collecting change – I normally give them buttons just to test the validity of their blindness.

– Disabled children. These are my favourite. A drive through Sandton, Johannesburg, will present you of a selection of disabled children, each trying to out do each other with limps, swaggers and “deformed” joints. I used to be fooled…till I saw one knock off at 5pm, and walk around the block, straighten up, and carry on walking normally.

– Guys in wheelchairs with death wishes. Ok, now before I come across as insensitive, I understand, that having no legs seriously diminishes your chances of getting a job at the bank. But why oh why, are there so many legless wheel chair folk who insist of making a hazard of themselves by going up and down lanes in peak hour traffic! There are even some who do tricks like spinning around quicker than Michelle Kwan at the Olympics. Anyone have the balls to shout at them? Ok ok, I’ll do it.

Don’t get me wrong. I understand there is a huge problem with unemployment, economy as so forth, but surely it makes me a better person if I just ignore it and try and take care of my own first? Seriously, I just want to make it from point A. to point B. every day.

Wow…now that that’s off my chest I feel a whole lot better.
I’d most certainly go to hell for some of these comments I’m sure… but then again…this is South Africa… I may already be there….

You know what I hate…(the first in a series)

July 27, 2009

and boy is it a long list of things that irritate the absolute cr@p out of me lately…. call it becoming a cranky old man….but i digress. for the sake of this post, I have one particular irritation in mind.

Ever met someone new, and within the first few lines of the conversation, they are already calling you “sweety” and “honey” as if you are old sweethearts of the rodeo.

I barely tolerate it from old “friends” who throw it in conversation every now and again…

But how the hell do you tell someone brand new to kindly refrain from referring to you by anything lovey-dovey when they don’t know you from Joe….(i don’t even know if thats the saying…but still relevant).

No women should ever refer to a guy as anything cutesy ESPECIALLY if they are not in a relationship…

btw…this girl shall be referred to as “New Girl” in all future posts she may appear in… because right now she irritates me too much for me to call her by her actual name….

Yet strangely….when a certain someone else calls me something endearing i begin babbling like Rain Man….

Go figure….