Monday, April 27, 2009

Bad Behaviour.

Today at Wegmans, I heard a (grown) woman drop a 24 pack of beer (causing a mess) and then watched her (literally) run away. RUN. I thought, after seeing this, that no matter how old she was, she wasn't old enough to be drinking alcohol.

I want to start a website called: I Judge You When You Behave Badly In Public.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Today At The Dog Park

I arrived and standing on the big hill in the middle of it, were two people who could not keep their hands off each other. In a fit of disgusting displays of affection, he had his hand in various nooks and crannies that are usually only explored within the privacy of the bedroom, not to mention his tongue in places that are usually the realm of ENT doctors.

They had a sort of labby-collie type black and tan dog that tended to be on the less socialised side. On more than one occasion I saw Jeeves adopt his ears back, snapping stance, the one where he is clearly trying to tell the other dog, "I am uncomfortable with your behaviour, leave me alone" by way of a high pitched bark.

Also at the park was a mother and her little girl, also on the less socialised side of things. The girl had not been taught how to be around a dog which, from my point of view, from the moment they arrived and she was instantly knocked over, created a dangerous situation. She was knocked over because she ran right into a dog from behind, who in turn, chased her and ran her down.

I was standing and chatting with a few people, while our dogs played together. A woman walked up to one of the people I was talking to, a man, and said, "Is this your dog?" gesturing to the black and tan dog that belonged to octopus couple.

"No." He replied.

"Well, that dog just pissed all over my daughter. "

The man made some sort of noise indicating acknowledgment.

"Do you know who's dog it is? It pissed all over my daughter."

The man's girlfriend said, "I don't know, I'm sorry."

The woman replied, "It's just disgusting."

The wet little girl stood their, with a blank expression on her face.

When the woman finally discerned who owned the offending dog, she didn't go and talk to them about the matter. She complained about it some more to us, saying that they had stood their laughing while their dog defiled her daughter. She bided her time until they made a move to leave the park, at which point, she shouted at them from across the park.

Then she took her child, left the park and went to the police.

I'm not kidding.

Bad Manners All Around. The nauseating couple should have made a good faith effort to stop their dog from micturating over the poor little girl and the stupid woman should have set a much better example for the little girl. Dragging her around the park to yell at strangers? Going to the police? There are worse things than piss in this world. Instead of teaching the girl to get over shitty things that happen to you, by being sympathetic (but not angry!), she taught the girl to make ineffectual complaints and be thoroughly rude to strangers (by whom I mean the man she accused of being the dog owner in the first place). She didn't even show her how to voice her grievance like an adult - if she really wanted some kind of apology or closure, she should have approached the couple and addressed the issue with them appropriately instead of shouting across the park.

She took the dog pissing on her daughter personally.

So while I started my trip out to the dog park, wishing that there was some kind of posting about dog park etiquette for dogs (i.e. it is not safe to bring a leashed dog into the dog park, it is disgusting not to pick up after your dog, etc.) I realised that these sorts of things are probably as ineffectual as that woman's outrage. People are just jerks sometimes.

The Wombles

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Facebook is so weird. Not that I'm judging.

I've seen pictures of old friends, posted on Facebook, that make me feel as if I've walked in on them having sex and then turned around, only to find the door locked behind me and to then discover that they don't care that I'm in there and are continuing with their...machinations.

I guess that's a rather long metaphor, but the pictures are just so unabashed, so "out there" that the only choice one has is to start making pop psychology diagnoses. At least that's what I do.

"She has always used her relationships with men to validate herself, so therefore she is posting these pictures of herself in these blatantly sexual positions in order to appear more attractive in the eyes of others. What she doesn't realise is how transparent this is and also, how quickly she needs to get herself into therapy."

One picture in particular, the person looks like they are being date raped. Date raped.

In addition to inappropriate pictures, there are jokes occasionally made on peoples posts that I think are childish, inappropriate and rude. A (straight) male friend changed his relationship status and it was met with, "Can't wait to meet him" and "What's his name?" jokes.

This is a funny place for me to be in. I am far from prudish and certainly far from anyone who gets offended by pretty much anything -I do have my fair share of somewhat scandalous pictures posted up on Facebook. I'm not particularly fond of political correctness (don't get me drunk and started on cultural relativism. Or Garrison Keillor, for that matter). It is just weird to want other people to see a lot of this stuff. Or know about it.

Maybe it's not them, it's me. Maybe I'm showing my age - I feel like I missed the everyone-knows-everything-about-you-in-digital generation by a couple of years. Young enough to know what it is, too old not to be horrified or totally grossed out. I mean, no one even had a cell phone when I was in high school until my senior year and even then, it was a rarity.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Richard Coyle, Bad Movies and Sleepiness.

It's 1 in the morning, I fell asleep for several hours after I returned home from work this evening and now I am perky and wide awake. I didn't get enough sleep last night because Jeeves had a panic attack due to fireworks being let off somewhere nearby. I'm not sure why dogs hate fireworks so much. ItalicAnd so, I'm going to go to bed quite late again and thus beginning the endless catch-22 of the proverbial night person.


I just finished watching a really weird movie called the Libertine. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. I'm not even going to link to it, because it really wasn't that interesting enough. It's starring Johnny Depp in the somewhat biographical role of John Wilmot, the 2nd Earl of Rochester. He does a great job, but the plot is confusing and just not very interesting. I found it because I was looking for things Richard Coyle has done - he had a small role in it.

Why Richard Coyle? Because I had a strange dream the other night where Richard Coyle was a friend of mine. I realised when I woke up that I wouldn't mind having Richard Coyle be my friend. I bet he'd be a lot of fun.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


I've started my new job!

I like it. So far.

Friday, April 3, 2009

I Thought Winter Was Over

What the hell is wrong with this crazy place? 60 degrees yesterday and then tomorrow:

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Stranger's Babies.

I'm in the lobby of the site of my new job, doing my last volunteer shift. I start getting paid Monday.

I like this place because I like meeting all sorts of people. Right now there is a girl in here (I say girl because I think she must be younger than me) with the youngest of her 3 babies. This one is nine months old. It just spit up on the carpet.

I feel odd sometimes because I never have anything to say to mothers or to babies. Motherese isn't something I am prepared to use. Other women can, with the greatest of ease, slip right into that language, no matter whose baby it is, say the right things, ask the mother the correct questions and everyone seems happy. Their faces light up at the sight of a baby. I don't seem to regard them as anything more interesting than just another person, one that's a little younger than me. It's a social interaction that I just do not have the tools for.

It's not that I absolutely don't want children of my own (I go back and forth). I've just come to the conclusion that I have no interest in stranger's children, particularly babies. I just don't know what to say. I feel like I did not "get the memo." When it is the clear topic at hand - because you are in a lobby with a talkative mother, I have a difficult time. I have little or no opinion, interest or knowledge on the subject - I have literally nothing to say. Which is quite rare, for me. Under a certain age, children seem to be fair game for all sorts of women to gurgle. And that just seems weird to me - I mean, what's so special about a baby?

I'm sure that sounds callous, but I really mean it. I get the whole "it's a new life" thing and that babies are absorbing the world around them at an astounding rate. That is actually pretty cool and actually interesting to me. Little tiny beings programming themselves. I have, oddly and for various reasons, made quite a personal study about children and learning and parenting: In part because of my interest in evolutionary psychology and anthropology, in part because of my utter frustration with the Palo Alto Unified School District, and also, in part, because I am aware of my lack of knowledge in this area, but understand that it is a part of the human experience (whether or not it is part of my experience). But that is where my interest ends. I simply cannot muster the strength to talk to anyone about their baby, especially right out of the blue. But somehow, babies, like cigarettes, are a socially acceptable way for people to start conversations with strangers.

I realise that every mother thinks their baby is special - and they should (within reason: my old boss forwarded a bulletin board post to me that his wife had found on one of her mom websites. It was all about how this woman felt she was selling her child short, not giving him the advantages that he deserved and how she needed a way for him to express his gifts or else his life would be ruined. Therefore she was seeking a chess tutor. Then she mentioned his age: 2 and a half). But I still am not sure how that translates into other women cooing and burbling at stranger's babies. It just smacks of false intimacy (at least it would be for me, because the emotions I would be supposed to be emoting would not be real) and I can't stand that.

I'm sure a lot of has to do with the fact that I was never around tiny babies. I'm the youngest but one, in my generation, on my mother's side of the family and the next oldest is my brother (8 years difference). My cousins have started having children but I rarely ever see them - and they are all old enough now to hold conversations (well, they're almost conversations). My brother certainly hasn't had any. In addition to this, gender defined roles were never a subject in our household. My brother and I were both expected to go to college and become earners. No one ever said to me, "When you get married and have children..." rather, it was "When you grow up and are fully capable of supporting yourself."

So here I am, sitting in the lobby of my soon to be place of employment, finally feeling comfortable because I have been given means of supporting myself and my family, wondering what on earth to respond to this woman when she starts muttering about her baby and how on earth the other women in the office know just what to say.