I am not someone who has anger issues, even with my penchant for a rant every now and then. In fact I would consider myself a finely balanced individual. Somewhat odd, yes, but everyone has their own idiosyncrasies. This is what makes the human race so fascinating and infuriating in equal measure. I may just have stranger traits than others
As balanced as I claim to be, it is a fine line to walk and it is often the small things that get to me the most.
I would like to think that I live in a civilized household; the sad reality is far from it. But I grasp at anything that makes my existence more civilized, which is why we have a cutlery drawer divided into different sections for the various utensils. Not unusual I hear you say, allow me to continue. I would invite you to my kitchen if it weren’t for the biohazard restrictions in place and let you gaze upon this insult to common sense. Forks in the knife section, knives where the forks should dwell and THREE different kinds of spoons littered throughout. I believe Edgar Allan Poe once wrote about such horrors.
Such experiences are why I have come to the realization that I cannot expect anyone to live to the standards that I demand, thusly I have decided my happiness can only be found living by myself. I cannot spend my life rearranging cutlery. But my annoyances and peculiar behavior cannot be restricted to my home; I am also mildly eccentric in the world beyond my front door.
Sometimes I don’t get very far from my front door before I have to return. Often I get the sneaking suspicion that I failed in the seemingly simple task of closing the door properly behind me. Most people could shrug it off, but not me. I leave early for appointments to ensure plenty of time to return home for this contingency. Planning is everything.
A while back I used to listen to a radio show that discussed the concept of public pretending, the art of doing something to cover up a mistake. Should I be walking around in a public place and realize that I am going in the wrong direction, it is not physically possible for me to turn around and walk the way I need. The lengths I have gone to in order to cover up an error I doubt anyone else will have noticed border on embarrassing and psychotic.
The most common ploy is getting my phone from my pocket and looking at it as if reading a new text message to see that one of my many and very real friends has changed the fictitious meeting spot, thus making me have to turn around and walk back in the other direction, usually with an extra shake of the head to emphasize how put out I am by the inconvenience. Sometimes to mix things up, I’ll adjust this technique to pretending I have got a phone call, phone obviously on vibrate otherwise how else would I know someone was calling, and act out one half of a conversation. I shall demonstrate, “Hey Jeff, yeah I’m in town now. Cool, I’ll meet you there”. With this option you must be careful to not overcomplicate things and give yourself up, it is an insane art form.
Bonus tip: Please note that while pretending to be on the phone is an excellent way to pass by the chuggers (charity muggers, or chunts as Sean Lock prefers), I would like to offer an endlessly more amusing technique that has served me well. As the chugger approaches, do not change pace as they hit you with their opening gambit, just say calmly “these are not the droids you are looking for” and wave your hand like a Jedi in their face. You are now free to continue on your way, as there is no scripted come back for such an action. You’re welcome.
If the phone technique fails, I have been known to continue walking in the wrong direction until I reach a pedestrian crossing and continue back on the other side of the road to my intended destination. This method can leave you walking for a very long time and quite possibly find you lost in a place alien to you. However this does not work in pedestrianized areas, in this case you will have to walk into a shop, pretend to look at something then leave in the direction you need.
I know that my behavior could be considered odd and often bordering on obsessive compulsive, but I will be the one to have the last laugh. Should an armed robber sneak into my house and be confronted by one of my housemates, the chances are he’ll reach into the drawer seeking a utensil for self-defense and grab one of three kinds of spoon.
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