Apart from physical violence, sexual inappropriateness, or being openly bigoted, the fastest way to get me to dislike you is to say "Well if there's no price on it, it must be free." when I'm trying to ring you up.
A guy who I had been having a great conversation with said this today and saw my face drop.
Guy: WOW. Did I just annoy you or something?
Me: That joke is not, has never been, and will not ever be funny to anyone who has ever worked retail. You should never say it.
Guy: Is it really th--
Me: Yes. It's really that awful. Occasionally, a clerk or manager will smile and politely laugh with you, but if you pay attention you will sense just how much they actually hate you by the grind of their teeth. Never say it again. Ever.
For real, though. Never say it.
Open Letter To The Guy On The Red Line's T-Shirt Which Read "Don't Sweat The Petty Things, Pet The Sweaty Things."
I have never met a tiny dog named Precious that I didn't want to feed a steel-toed boot to, using the combination of high velocity and my foot.
This is not a reflection on small, awful dogs but a reflection on the shitty type of person who names a small dog "Precious" and then doesn't train it. Which, in my experience, is every person who has ever named a small dog "Precious".
People who name their Huskies and St. Bernards "Precious" are okay by me.
I have never been a successful roommate of plants. Haven't nurtured a seed into a leafy vegetable or house decoration since a seventh grade science experiment.
I inherited a bunch of plants from Zuzu when she moved South. The hanging plants died almost immediately, as they were just enough out of sight range that I completely forgot about them, but these two large, leafy standing plants thrived. I watered them....not very often...but enough that they seemed very healthy. I was shocked when, during a night she featured at The Treehouse, Zouzou remarked how much trouble she had with the type of plant that was so robust even a year after it came into my possession. A few months after a friend's dog chewed two of the biggest leaves out.
A year and a half later, I went away on tour, and all the remaining plants in the house died, except these two. They were very unhealthy with wilting, yellowed leaves, but they were still somewhat alive. I watered them...still not as often as I should have...and they continued to cling to a yellowed, phalllic-leaved life.
This went on for months. But starting at the beginning of the month, I moved them right in front of the door, and began watering them every day as I walked by them.
The yellow leaves collapsed, and I thought "Hmmm...maybe I've OVERwatered them now." But then I noticed many new leaves shooting up. Quickly. Like ridiculously quickly. I pulled out the wilted leaves, and now one of the two plants is about half as tall as it was at its peak, while the other is actually taller than it was when I first gained custody of it.
I forgot that, while it's easy for unhealthy plants to wilt and look unhealthy due to neglect, it's hard to accidentally kill them permanently.
None of this is a metaphor.
Platonic Dude and I order food via Foodler. A half an hour later his phone rings.
Platonic Dude: "Hello."
Guy on other end of phone talks.
PD: "No problem. Let me put some pants on and I'll be right down."
Me: "You're already wearing pants. What are you talking about?"
PD: "Yes, but since I put the order on my credit card, you're the one going downstairs to get the food."
I gave the driver a fifteen dollar tip when I signed the credit card receipt.
My favorite point in reading poetry recently was saying a philosophical line really sincerely, and hearing a segment of The Cantab audience making the approving "that's so deep" sound, and then finishing the line with "is a TERRIBLE metaphor", and making eye contact with a couple of the people who mmmmmmmmmmmed.
Actively listen if you're going to pretend to be engaged. Don't just passively accept absurd affirmations as wisdom.
Tonight is not the first night I've looked at a bookcase and though "Oh no, it's at a weird angle, I hope it doesn't fall over." And I walk over and try and tilt it until I remember that the bookcase is perfectly fine, the house is crooked.
I have spent three hours cleaning this stove top with non-scratching cleaner and a sponge. It now looks like a white stove that's seen some hard times, just as it did it did about a year ago, as opposed to a yellow stove that's had the utility beaten out of it, which is what it's looked like since I got back from tour in January.
This is starting to be true of this entire house. It looks cluttered and in need of leaning. But it no longer looks like the people who live in it gave up.
Even the plants which managed to thrive, despite my notoriously grey thumb, until last fall but which withered to the borders of death this winter, are starting to look like plants again.
None of this is metaphor.
Dear phone predictive text, the message I was TRYING to send was "Do you still want to meet up and work on our poems?" not "Do you want to meet up and work on our relationship?"
I have, on a few occasions, posted about a Brony who comes into the store, and is a particular nuisance. He's about nineteenish, a dude of color, and a huge, attention sucking shitbag.
Yesterday, after asking me if he could "borrow" one of the thirty-five dollar Last Airbender books, he started talking to his much-less-annoying friend about an idea one of his friends had for a Peter Pan comic.
Bag Of Shit Brony: "He's got a whole new costume design, so he's not wearing those faggy tights."
He continues to talk while I loudly type things into the computer, occasionally looking up to glare at him.
"It's cool, though. He's, like a badass Peter Pan, not some faggot flying around to Neverneverland."
Things I thought about saying:
"You should really be careful about the language you use, both at home, and in public where people can hear you and realize what a hateful idiot you are."
"If people who wear tights are faggy, are you saying Superman is faggy?"
"You're a Brony. No, I'm not calling you a hypocrite because most people assume Bronies are gay because they like brightly colored equestrian cartoons about love. That's absolute trash. But Bronies are supposed to be about love and acceptance, so maybe, in addition to being fucken terrible about acknowledging your environment, you're also too fucken stupid to understand the premise of the show that you incessantly prattle on about when you're alone. And you're usually alone. And if you continue to be a hateful little piece of shit who watches My Little Pony AND is homophobic, then you'd better get used to being alone because the Venn Diagram of homophobes and Bronies is probably microscopically minuscule like your fucken brain."
What I said:
Nothing. Because I was at work in a retail environment that I don't own. And even though this idiot comes in on the regular to talk, without ever having actually purchased anything, there are things that I am encouraged not to express.
He better hope I don't see him on the street, though. Oh, there won't be any violence, but I will completely embarrass him in front of what will probably be a group of strangers.