Ain’t Misbehaving?

Waited to back out of a parking space. Cars on both sides, right and left. Since some recent fender-benders, my awareness is heightened.

In particular, the car on the left, sported out-of-state license. If it mattered, from the largest northeastern state. I was in the process of backing out.

The white-haired, senior female driver, exited her car, opened the right, rear door with a thud against my car. Then held up my backing out while she unloaded material from the back seat.

“Why hadn’t I inspected my car for damage?” Asked my wife. The guilty party took up all the space between the two cars, made my exit nearly impossible. No damage was found, later.

With the family, a few years ago, at Disney World, we waited in a long line to enter the Tower Of Terror.  There were people from all over the US, and from other countries.

After almost an hour in Florida heat and humidity, “What are you looking at?  Stop staring at me!” Came unexpectedly from someone in the crowd–directed at my wife.  I didn’t let it go.  Would have been worse, had she been called the “B” word.

“I don’t know why you’re picking on my wife–or what kind of game you’re playing.  She’s the sweetest person in the world, mother of three, grandmother of four.  Aren’t we all here to have a good time?  Everybody’s tired of waiting.”

Tower of Terror compressed and decompressed my spine in rapid succession.  I felt like a human concertina.  This was supposed to represent a hotel elevator gone out of control.  I was glad when it all ended.

A recent news story about an airline passenger berating seat mates for being overweight, caught my attention. It would not have made the news, had the complainer, not made a public scene. Which resulted in the offender being asked to leave the flight.

Are there that many of us so starved for attention? So much so, that common decency is ignored? I’ll admit to being occasionally annoyed by bad behavior. I try to keep my mouth shut unless physically threatened.

Why I Can’t Stand People: Reason #1

Have you ever known someone, that wanted something; didn’t know what they wanted; made everyone else miserable; then, because their friends weren’t mind readers, became even angrier?  That’s one reason, why I sometimes can’t deal with people.

Which has little to do with how I spent most of the day.  With the other lemmings, followed obediently through local shopping malls, ending with a late lunch.  Although this is usually fertile ground for observing foibles of the human species–opportunities today were strangely lacking.

Perhaps my vibes sent out a subconscious warning. Was the observer was being observed?  Twisting, turning, attempted to follow my spouse through the clothing racks–eyes levelled, with obligatory poker face.  At one point it was touch and go. In mere seconds, she disappeared among the blouses, never realized she was lost.

The Brave…(Black Friday Post Script)

The brave, the hard core, are out in force today for Black Friday.  It’s pouring cold rain.  Serious shoppers won’t pay the weather any mind.

“What do you want for Christmas?”  Asked my daughter.

That’s a difficult question to answer.  How much material things does a person need?

I have too much stuff as it is.  Letting go of things that have sentimental attachments is difficult.  I’m speaking primarily of outdated electronics and camera gear.

So what if an I-Pod and speaker stand are the same size as my first transistor radio?  The sound quality will never match that of my giant vintage Bose 501 speakers.

I’m staying home.  I can watch boorish behavior of impatient shoppers on television coverage.  Turkey leftovers are calling me–I must depart.


snake in crapper

–Picture: Debbie Williams, WKRG–

An image, from the restroom of an unidentified local business, was disturbing.  The thought of any serpentine creature coming close to my bum at that moment was/is frightening.  This snake in a toilet bowl, with colored bands around its body, may or may not, have been poisonous.  That was little comfort.  There are at least five poisonous snake species indigenous to this area. Could there be anything creepier?  Where does fear of snakes in humans come from?  Is it instinctive?


Meredith F. Small: Anthropologist from Cornell University, says “Ophidiophobia” is fear of snakes, which is a subset of “Herpetaphobia” the more inclusive fear of reptiles.

Snakes, it seems, were the oldest known predators on primates and they have been the most persistent predators over millions of years.

Today, monkeys are scared of them and humans make horror films about them, like “Snakes on a Plane.” 


“Just when you thought it was safe to go to the bathroom again,” is the essence of horror movies.  I’m going to be more cautious from now on–no more going to the bathroom in the dark.  Had I patronized this business in the past?  Mum was the word, for fear of bad publicity.  I have a healthy respect for snakes; I wouldn’t call it a phobia.  If I see them first, I’m OK.


Do you feel uncomfortable when you see someone else being embarrassed?  What’s most likely to make you squirm?

check out line 2

While standing in a checking line in a supermarket or big-box store, someone ahead discovers they don’t have enough money to pay for all the items.  Was it absent-mindedness or someone scraping together every penny to survive?  They’re embarrassed, and make the painstaking decision on what is essential and what to leave.  Occasionally, embarrassment takes over, and all items are left.

When watching married couples having down-and-dirty arguments in public places.  Personal details are brought out that never should see the light of day.  Their young children, with blank expressions on their faces sit and wait.  I cringe, because this is the way they think things are supposed to be.

I feel sorry for the poor, usually teenage, store clerk or wait staff person, berated abusively for some insignificant minor detail blown out of proportion by some adult power-tripping lowlife customer.  I’m also embarassed for employees chewed out in front of customers by their supervisors.  It shows a complete lack of class.


Taipei Arcade Games
Taipei Arcade Games (Photo credit: Michael Kwan (Freelancer))

In through the out-door

Went against the flow

Kaleidoscope of people

Some casual and carefree

Strangers, I didn’t know

Runaway shopping carts

Cacophonic arcade games

A stew of sound and scent

Rode up the escalator

Felt really down

Wives with their husbands

That weren’t really there

Some rested on benches

Part of the walking dead

Special sale, today only!

Finest imported lucite

Genuine imitation quartz

Too much chrome and glassness

Hidden among mockery and crassness

Real men didn’t do kitsch

Descended to Dante’s level three

Curtains, pillow shams, duvets

A mother bear cuffed her cubs

We’re leaving now, she said!

Could only look with wonder, ’cause

Sometimes mothers ate their young

Peered through the bars

Just another day in exile