Warning, blog content ahead.
It is often that I find myself observing and people watching. If you were to come into my store I would greet you, smile warmly, and offer help on your broken AC or heater. I’m well aware that I am an odd cookie being a HVAC licensed technician that runs an AC parts store─ but it goes deeper than that. I do enjoy being near people that walk in, since it is (secretly) the human interaction that I crave, but it’s more so the helping people that are in need.
I amuse myself mostly, realizing that outside of my workspace I would run away hissing if I had to go to a party, event, gathering, etc. And heaven forbid trapped in the elevator with one other person that feels the need to talk. Let’s just…can we not? Can we just survive this mutually awkward experience in our own bubbles of quiet? Please? I’d like that. Man, do I wish there was a color code at salons or uber drivers that just simply says, ‘no convo please, thank you for doing the things for me that I paid ze monies for!’
And please, love of god, why do spas and massage places not have this option for you to hang on the flipping door? I don’t want to go into a panic attack and tense as you start rubbing me and then talk about things. Let’s just cut to the chase, I don’t know you─ you don’t know me─ I have to talk all day, I just want your strange hands all over my body as we breath each other’s stank in silence. Ok, maybe not silence but like─ have Google or Alexa get them nature sounds going bruh.
It’s hard going in public and actually connecting to people. I’ve always just sort of tolerated the overly-loud obnoxious co-workers and even the ones that we were able to sit and chill. It was all still just work people, or school people. It’s odd admitting it, but I have slowly grown alone over the years and it doesn’t really bother me. Not in the way that you would think, at least.
I’m an extremely private person (although if you were to talk to me you would think otherwise) that has gotten good at deflecting conversations off of me and getting them to talk about themselves. While I can open up on a platform that doesn’t require anyone to talk back, actually having a conversation with a real person about real things? Nope. No sir, I don’t like it. I’ll laugh, and smoothly change the subject. And I’m good at it too.
I think it’s interesting to hear people talk about their lives, or fuss over simple things. They all say the same jokes in the form of “happy wife, happy life,” or, “Oh wow, it actually went through” (credit card machine humor) or, “it’s free, right?” (or some other ridiculously low dollar amount)
My personal favorites are electricians, mechanics, and engineers. “I’m not an HVAC guy, but I’m an electrician! (mechanic, engineer, blah blah) So I think I got this.” No, they don’t. They never do. Except some of the mechanics and engineers.
Engineers are insufferable menaces that will talk about themselves constantly, ask questions and then argue over your answers, and then dismiss you mentally when you’re halfway through a sentence. So, I’ve come up with a fool proof plan on how to tackle them. And man, does it work! It goes something like this:
“Hi, I’m designing my ductwork and AC system and was wondering if you could offer any insight.”
I’ve learned this is a trap. Much like if anyone tells you they don’t want anything for their birthday. Engineers aren’t looking for an answer, they want you to bask in their glory and for you to give words of praise for their engineering genius.
To which I respond, “Ok, great! Tell me what you were thinking.” Then I smile, nod, and offer encouraging words. 100% of the time they talk about everything they’ve thought of. Aside from the annoyance of having to be held captive, the conversation can leave on a positive note and more quickly than if I tell them the truth.
Then I offer the obligatory, “I think you should do that” when they ask. They then will toddle themselves out with happy faces and frail egos intact.
While some experiences have left me exhausted, frazzled, and feeling low─ it also has given me the chance to be social or to be surrounded in some sort of normal existence. While I won’t get into the particulars of why, suffice it to say while I don’t live alone, I often feel alone. To the point of before this whole pandemic thing happened (or rather, is still happening) I allowed myself a mental break day once a year to go get a massage. I haven’t gotten to do it in almost two years and man do I miss that moment of bliss. The one where my brain gets to shut down and I don’t have to think about anything other than, “wow, this feels really nice. I miss having this sort of touch from others.”
And on that note, but much less creepy─ I miss the experience of someone’s encouraging words in my life. Someone just happy to be next to me that every once in a while says, “hey- you’re doing great and I’m proud of you.” Someone that from time-to-time looks over at me when I’m not looking and smiles. Mostly shaking their head and secretly calling me a loveable dumbass.
Yeah, I’m aware of how eeew it sounds. All of this aside, I think what I’m feeling recently is a deep seated need for affection. To feel desirable and to be desired.
In any case, I hope that your weekend is full of loveable dumbasses to call your own.
Have a fantastical, wonderfully awesome weekend everyone!