I have a problem.
It's a small problem really, depending on your outlook.
A small, delicate but truly awkward problem.
You probably don't want to hear about it but I want to talk about it.
Here's the trouble.
I am a girl.
Of the female variety.
As a result I look soft. Soft and sometimes pretty. Not too pretty. Not head turningly gorgeous. Just kind of nice.
Why is this a problem?
Well, apparently, people like touching girl things. Perhaps because of the softness. Perhaps because of the prettiness. Whatever it is - I attract touch.
Good! Right? No, wrong. Very wrong. Touch from people I know is a wonderful thing. Touch from people I love is a glorious thing. Touch from certain people whom I REALLY love is delightful. Touch from complete strangers...?
Those are just a few words to describe it.
I hate it.
But I keep attracting it.
I'm a friendly person. That's probably why. It's probably my fault that strangers keep touching me. When I step outside of my house I treat every human being I meet as my best friend EVER. Unless they give me reason to behave differently.
Some people just give me the stink eye and then I get scared and I'm less friendly.
Some people ignore me or treat me like dirt and then I'm less friendly with them.
But most people are pretty patient and they return my misplaced affection. Unfortunately a rare few (or surprisingly common lot) mistake friendliness for flirtation or interest.
Look. If I'm interested romantically I'll probably just tell you. I'm not very good at secrets or subtlety. The only time I'll keep it to myself is if I think I have no chance in heck of gaining your attention. Then I might keep it to myself but generally I'll just outright tell you.
Clear? Good. So stop touching me.
If only it were that easy!
I've decided to start tracking the behaviorisms that attract all this touching and using this list I am going to make a handbook for ladies. A sure fire way to stop from being touched by strangers! So here we go. The first three things that you must stop doing if you want to stop being touched by strangers are...
1. Pink Hair Attracts Perverts - Multi-colored Hair Attracts More Perverts
I like colors. Lots of colors. I like colors in my hair especially. So this one time I started dying my hair pink and then I thought: Self, what's better then one bright color in your hair? LOTS of bright colors in your hair! So I dyed my hair three different neons shades of brilliance. Blue, purple and yellow. Not JUST yellow, neon yellow. I was wonderful and apparently a big old go signal to perverts everywhere.
There I was. Quietly minding my own business when some fellow came up behind me. "I like your hair," he says.
"Thanks," I responded. I was used to it. People commented on my hair all the time. It was both an uncomfortable and amusing process. It was nice that my hair brought people such joy but weird to get so much attention. I honestly hadn't considered that Rainbow Brite hair might attract attention to ME.
Next thing I know Mr. Fellow is petting my hair, "It's soft." he says.
Soft. Shiny. And multi-colored hair attracts touch.
So don't do it.
Keep your hair ONE shade of color at a time. It's safer.
2. Soft Shoulders Attract Tired Perverts
I was, once again, minding my own business. At this point I had given up on multi-colored hair. It just seemed unwise. Especially for someone who hates attention and unwanted stranger touching. So my hair was boring and brown. There I stood, just checking out product on a shelf in a store when BAM... I feel this pressure on my shoulder. At first I thought someone was touching my shoulder to get my attention but when I looked down this guy was standing beside me with his head on my shoulder.
Our eyes met.
"Um... hello?" I said with my best: WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING? tone.
He smiled more widely, lifted his head and walked away.
AS IF NOTHING HAD JUST HAPPENED.
Stop it. Just stop having soft shoulders.
It's not wise.
3. Being Nice Attracts Butt Grabs
This winter while waiting in line at a store one of my frequent customers (from my night job) came up behind me. We started chatting. I'm friendly with him but I don't flirt with him. He's a nice guy but he's a customer. I'm not generally interested in customers. It just seems like bad news.
We chat away. In our usual manner. Suddenly his arm is around my waist. Holy. Crap. How do I get out of this without hurting his feelings? That was my first thought. No joke.
He's a nice guy. I don't want to hurt his feelings.
But then his hand is sliding down. Past my lower back... lower...
Yeah. My ninja instincts kicked in. BAM! I slid out of his hold and halfway across the store in the blink of an eye.
These days I keep a nice solid object between him and I at all times.
Stop being nice to people.
Talking to them. Caring about them. Smiling at them is an open invitation to butt grabs.
Just don't do it.
To Be Continued
More to come when I feel up to reliving more misery.