Hopefully this year’s sole introspective entry – “I’m an Arsehole.”

A couple of weeks back I was walking from my house to the internet café when I saw an Australian girl I vaguely know heading toward me. As she got within a few yards she waved and said “Hi. How are you?” It was clear that she wanted a conversation. I said “Hi. Not Bad. Sorry, got to be somewhere,” and began walking again, a little faster than before. That I was lying must have been obvious. As I turned I could see from the dismissive scowl on her face that she thinks I’m a complete arsehole.
It’s a minor incident and not a particularly important one, but it did start me thinking, over the last couple of weeks, about the way I interact with other people, and I can’t help but reach the conclusion that she’s probably got a point.
Ever since I can remember I’ve found the experience of talking to vague acquaintances in the street acutely unpleasant. Strangers I can deal with fine, friends are usually no problem either, but people I barely know? What am I supposed to say to them? After 27½ years on this planet I still don’t have a clue. If I was sitting down in a more relaxed social situation there wouldn’t be a problem. The street, on the other hand, is an alien environment. Ignoring everyone I pass seems like the only option in a crowded city, if I’m in anything but a very good mood. I suppose I could put on an insincere little crocodile smile but then I would’ve become everything I hate. Suddenly having to re-calibrate into a social frame of mind is just a bit too much for me sometimes.
I don’t know what exactly to call this kind of behaviour. Ten years ago it was shyness, but it would be disingenuous to call it that now. I’m not afraid of people or what they think of me, I just don’t really care and really don’t want to talk to them sometimes. Does this make me an arsehole? Quite possibly. I’ve spent a lot of time ignoring people in Europe and getting away with it but here it’s different. It just isn’t feasible to ignore white people when coming across them is such a rare occurrence.
So does this make me an arsehole? Possibly it does. I don’t think it’s good to be rude to other people for no reason, but there really doesn’t seem to be another option available. There’s really no need for me to feel either ashamed or proud of myself. I’m just not an outgoing person and I don’t care any more.

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3 Responses to Hopefully this year’s sole introspective entry – “I’m an Arsehole.”

  1. i never know what to say to people from work when i’m walking past them in the corridors unless they speak to me i just ignore them. i’m never sure if that’s the right thing to do. oh well i don’t particularly like half of them anyway.

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