Saturday, April 21, 2007

Don't sit next to me. Just. Don't.

Yesterday I was 4 for 4.

1 for 4:

I’m sitting on the bus reading my book – it distracts me from the country music that my regular morning bus driver likes to blast. An older Chinese woman sits down next to me. I nod a hello and go back to my book, a universal sign for “I’m not going to be chatting with you because I’m reading, thank you.”

Chinese lady: “Oh! You’re reading!”

Me: “Yes.” Nose back in book.

CL: “Is it a good book?”

Me: “So far.” Nose back in book, thinking, “If it wasn’t good, would I be reading it?”

CL: “What book is it? Can I see the cover?”

Me: Shows her the cover. Nose back in book.

CL: Looks around for another victim. Not finding one, turns back to me “So, are you a writer, too?”

Me: I must have made a face during my pause before answering, “No.” Nose back in book.

2 for 4:

First seminar for the day – visiting faculty from Harvard giving a talk about his research.
Next to me is a man who promptly falls asleep within the first 15 minutes. He’s a loud breather half-snorer who occasionally wakes himself up with a snort. Look, buddy, you look old enough to be faculty. If you’re that tired or uninterested, pretend you have a meeting and skip out early. I’m sure your colleagues would rather have you leave early than embarrass yourself and your department by snoring during the Harvard guy’s talk.

3 for 4:

Second seminar for the day – student from the department. Next to me is a man I’ve not seen before, so maybe he’s a member of the student’s lab who’s showed up to support him… probably because his boss told him to. He’s at least my age and sits down next to me in the front row in full view of the rest of the room. He’s taken advantage of the refreshments provided and proceeds to devour his cookies and slurp his water bottle – loudly - during this kid’s talk. No longer entertained by his water bottle, he starts to pick at a zit on his temple, on the side of his head that’s facing me. Being a head wound, it starts to bleed with a vengeance. Having not been smart enough to grab a napkin with his cookies he’s got nothing to blot at the blood with.

So he rubs his fingers through it.

Then licks his fingers.


This goes on for at *least* 15 minutes.

He alternates running his fingers or the back of his hand through the blood to see if it’s stopped bleeding. I really think he thought nobody noticed. I can honestly say I’ve never been so disgusted during a seminar.

4 for 4:
This one was actually the least offensive/annoying of the bunch. Again, sitting on the bus to go home, I’m reading my book. A rather girthy young woman sits next to me, squishing me into the side of the bus. Not so uncommon – Rochester is definitely not lacking in fleshy women. At least she wasn’t talking loudly into her cell phone or chatting me up. I can handle being squished for my bus ride.

So, if you value your sanity, don’t sit next to me. I seem to attract the weirdos.


Blogger Chris B. said...

I feel like walking proof of your magnetism.

1:22 PM  
Blogger Lil Kate said...

Don't be so hard on yourself. I've had far weirder than you hovering around me. Besides, I don't think I'd ever classify you as "weird."

8:12 PM  
Blogger craig said...

Once in college I had a class in which the teacher liked us "in the round," ie., a big discussion circle. This gave me an unobstructed view of the kinda-cute girl across from me who spent one entire class picking at a zit on her forehead, then smelling her fingers.

After that, I didn't find her so cute any more.

7:10 AM  

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