Monday, October 03, 2005

Dear Jackass: Volume 4

Dear customer in line behind me at the retail checkout counter:

Why the passive-aggressive refusal to step into my space? I've finished paying for my purchases, and for the few extra seconds it takes me to dig my keys out of my purse and gather my bags, you hang back and refuse to put your items down so the checker can start scanning them--in spite of the fact that there are ten toe-tapping people in line behind you who wish you would. I even turn to you and say "Go ahead," because, clearly, I have completed my transaction and stepped to the far end of the counter...I'm not in your way at all. But for some bizarre reason, you remain in place, stricken, unable to move on with your life until I have completely left the area. Are you perhaps afraid you might catch some contagious disease or flesh-eating rash if you get near me?

You're just like the jackass in my gym locker room the other day. I was standing up on the bench so I could reach my upper-level locker, and I had both hands buried deep in my gym bag which was inside said locker. I was rooting around looking for something, when I saw a lingering jackass in my peripheral vision, hovering, clutching her towel. I thought she must be trying to get to the lockers below, so I stepped out of her way and continued rooting on tiptoe, now at an odd angle since my feet were over HERE and my arms over HERE--but she didn't budge. Finally I looked down and said, "Am I in your way?" She motioned wordlessly toward my water bottle--which as it happens, was sitting in front of her locker. I thought, "Christ, you've gotta be kidding me. She couldn't just move the bottle a few inches all by her little self?" But I was patient with the jackass, and merely said, "Oh, just go ahead and move it aside," and continued digging through my gym bag. But she refused to budge, and instead continued to stare miserably at my offensive water bottle. I looked up from my digging a moment later to see her still there, and finally I just knocked the bottle over with my foot so that it rolled a few inches away. Then, and only then, was the jackass free from her paralysis and able to approach her locker. Jackass.

Dear garage sale hosts:

You filthy liars. How dare you trick me into coming to your sad little trash heap sale with signs that say "HUGE sale! Multi-Family!" when clearly, there is nothing in your barren garage but three hats and a broken mug. I shake my fist at you. Also due for a fist-shaking are those garage sale entrepreneurs who make tiny, handwritten signs that can't be read from a moving car--am I expected to pull over, extract my handy magnifying glass from my purse, and fight to decipher your bad handwriting in order to locate your house? And what's the deal with putting one sign out on the major street, but none on the seven intersections I must then turn through in order to find you? Do you think I'm so intimately familiar with your neighborhood that at the mention of Shady Bluebird Drive, I can instantly pick up the trail with no further aide? And then when I do beat the odds and find your house, must you really sit there in your lawn chair in dead silence and stare full-on at me like a serial killer as I shop? Jackasses.

Dear construction workers:

You are one of life's greatest mysteries. What is broken inside you that causes you to whistle and whoop when a woman has the misfortune to walk past your work site? you defy logic and dignity by hooting and shouting like you're at a rodeo. Am I to be flattered by this? Should I drop my purse and bags and sprint over to where you are, throw my arms around you and yell, "Thank you! Thank you for noticing me! Here's my phone number--or better yet, let's just go copulate behind that dumpster over yonder!" I don't know why this particular display of stupidity is exclusive only to construction workers...but I wonder, what would it be like if men of every profession behaved like you do upon seeing a woman? What if my gynecologist whistled and yelled "Hey baby, bring it on!" every time I hopped up on the examining table? What if the pharmacist at my local drugstore leaned out the little consulting window and catcalled at every girl who wandered past, looking for the Mylanta? And what happened to you to make you this way, anyway? I imagine you started out as a normal male, able to comport himself with dignity around females. Then you got a job on a construction site, and slowly things began to change inside you. Is it the constant hammering sound that slowly eats away at your brain? Is it the hours of baking in the hot sun? I don't envy you your job--it seems very tiring and difficult to me, and I salute you for being able to handle it when I doubt I could. And what do I know--perhaps nothing quite takes the edge off a hard day's work like humiliating a passing female and making her wish she were invisible.

Jackass.

25 comments:

FTS said...

Sounds like someone had a bad day and could use some chocolate. ;-)

karla said...

Yes, please. Make it white chocolate.

Raph said...

As a former cashier, I can totally relate to your first letter. I witnessed that sort of nonsense on a regular basis at the grocery store I used to work in.

CommonWombat said...

"I imagine you started out as a normal male..."

Ah. I think I see the problem. You assume that there is such a thing as a NORMAL male. Sorry, we're all total freak bags, some of us just hide it better than others.

Um, I apparantly don't hide it at ALL.

Toooootal freak bag here.

niQ said...

tests your patience doesn't it? these scumbags everywhere.

i think common wombat's got it right. there's no such animal as a "normal" male.

Photo Phil said...

see, you can only hear and see the contruction workers when they make snide remarks while you walk by. those guys in suits up on the second, third, etc. floor of the office building staring down at you, as if they had nothing else to do, make the same remarks, you just cant hear them ;)

Dave Morris said...

Why not copulate in front of the dumpster? What are we, lepers?

Miladysa said...

Enough said - spot on!

(Btw, I used to feel the same way about the builders but after turning 40 I changed. On a good day I smile inside and think "I still have 'it'!" and on a bad day "Are they taking the p*** or what?!")

Bonanza Jellybean said...

When people act like that now, i just let them stand there and look stupid. I think they CHOOSE to.

And I don't get the construction workers either- it must be part of the union bylaws- so much per hour, so many breaks, so many women annoyed, etc.

Loved it- keep calling those jackasses out!

tigger said...

I seem to have the opposite problem with people in the grocery line. They practically shove me out of the way like we're in a hockey game! I am a small person, so it doesn't take much. Then, I have to find my keys with no purse-perch.

As for the construction worker thing...your rant made me think of an episode of Sex and the City where one of the chicks responded to a whooper with something like "Let's go! I haven't had sex in 4 MONTHS!" Of course, the whooper stuttered something about a wife and kids. Jackasses indeed.

HW said...

I always get stuck behind the woman with the mary poppins bag for a purse and even though she's finished her transaction, her buggy is loaded and she's got her receipt, she insists on standing at the little perch where you write checks, elbow deep in her magic bag searching for god knows what, because her keys are on this huge stretchy thingamabob on her wrist. These women I want to kill. Or at least, kick really hard in the hip...just to get them out of my way, y'know O:}

bornfool said...

There is a lot of whistling and catcalling where I work, too. It's the inmates whistling at new officers. They haven't whistled at me in years. *sniff*

AnonymousCoworker said...

Hey, I refused to be classified as abnormal because of those other male , mouth-breathing, knuckle dragging nitwits who would do something so stupid as to try to garner a woman's favor or attention by whistling or hollering.

As a gentleman, I prefer butt-pinching.

RitMeyer said...

Yes, you've got it girl! Why do people do that in the grocery store. Get a damn clue!!

As for the construction workers, I will ask my husband as he is a former one and ask him. I will get back to you.

Crazy MomCat said...

Each one of these made me laugh out loud! Thanks for sharing your frustration with the idiots of the world. Maybe one of them (of course none if it applied to ME) will read this and stop doing their stupid shit. So, you're doing the world a great service here actually. HA!

Jessica said...

Thanks for the laughs, Karla - even if you had to go through a lot of unfunny to share them.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

If the construction worker is by himself, it never happens. It takes a gang, because they need to impress each other with their maleness. What you do is walk up to the ringleader and say, "If you do that again, I am going rip off your balls and stuff them in your mouth." He won't dare hit you, and he will be shamed for eternity.

mrtl said...

All of them could stand to have you turn and yell, "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU???" at them, no? Or slap the frozen ones.

btw, you speak of gyns and flirting gone wrong. If you haven't read Booty Flies yet, it's highly recommended. (Girlfriend even got a nod from Rosie O'Donnell for this one.)

NA said...

Haha... I have no problem what-so-ever about getting into your space at the checkout line... or anyother place for that matter. And why would it bother you that some construction dudes are whooping at you?? Just accept the fact your still hot and move on.

Dirk the Feeble said...

I'm starting to get the impression that someone's favorite word is "jackass."

ck said...

UGH! Construction site behavior...I think it will always remain one of the great mysteries of the world.

Just Dawn said...

HI!
Thanks for visiting my blog and thanks for the diets idea. We (a co worker and myself) are doing the DOLLAR a pound. We each have to pay one another a dollar a pound each week for how much the other one loses.
May be a wash but losing pounds...we both win.
LOVE your blog..visit almost everyday.
also wanted to share a thought....
" God must love stupid people; He made so many." LOL

AP3 said...

I really relate to your person in line and jerk in the locker room stories. People are soooo weird sometimes. Being territorial is one thing, but being passive-aggresively territorial is just wrong.

mrhaney said...

ah karla. i truly love your post, any post you make for that matter. that is why you are on my xtra favorites list.

miss kendra said...

would it be ok if i stood on the corner and cat called you?

because i'm down the street right now...