This past Saturday evening, I took my girlfriend out try a sushi restaurant in the area. We had attempted to eat there the week before, but by the time we got there, the “all you can eat” deal was no longer valid, and that’s the only way I eat sushi. Judge me all you want, I’m not about to spend a hundo when I can get the same amount of rolls for $25 a person. That’s just good business sense.
Anyway, we were about halfway through our meal (she had eaten nine pieces of a California roll and I was midway through my third deep fried roll) when things started to get weird. We were seated right next to an open floor to ceiling windows that gave our table a patio feel, and directly outside this window were two enormous leopard-print high-heeled shoes. I don’t know whose they were, or how they ended up there, but they did make me do a double take when we walked up. I understand that they were a point of some interest; however, what I did not expect was for a middle-aged man who looked like he could be our dad stroll up and have a full 10-minute conversation with us about these shoes.
It began pretty normally, with him jokingly asking if they were mine and then immediately went off the rails as he started talking about attending a warehouse party/fight club with a bunch of cross-dressers in his youth. At multiple points during the conversation, I shared a “is this guy still talking?” look with my girl, but the man was oblivious as ever. It took another five minutes of nodding and smiling while he talked about how he wasn’t a cross dresser, but if he was, he “wouldn’t be caught dead in those,” and how he may be fat but he carried his weight well. “I’m like that chubby girl you take home. You’re not proud of it, but you’d fuck me. You’d fuck me good,” were his exact words. When he finally left, I nonchalantly continued to stuff my face with sushi goodness, but my girlfriend was totally shell shocked. “Does shit like that happen to you often?” she asked me. “You seem so used to it.” That’s when I realized how much weirder my life is than most people’s.
All my life, weirdos have been drawn to me. I’ve had an old man in Vegas tell me I needed to stand differently or people would think I was gay (that one really fucked with my head), a stranger has asked for my advice on whether apple cider vinegar would help cure constipation (while shopping at a grocery store). I even had the weirdest interaction trying to buy Plan B from a pharmacy. That’s just in the last three months. I’ve also had a random dude in a bar try to buy the shirt I was wearing and then want to fight me when I said no, multiple strangers admit to me that they’ve cheated on their spouses, and when I was in high school a (male) police officer told me I was “a good looking kid, and probably got laid all the time.” I’m not sure what that had to do with my registration being expired, but I wasn’t about to stick around to find out.
I don’t know if it’s because I have a naturally trustworthy face or if I just revel in the awkwardness of these situations so much that these people think I’m enjoying our interaction, but these conversations are a dime a dozen for me. I want to stop it, but I don’t know how. I’ve tried acting disinterested, I’ve tried walking away and on multiple occasions, I’ve straight up asked people, “Why are you telling me this?”
None of it works.
I’m like a moth light to weirdos but instead of killing them, talking to me only makes them weirder. Sometimes I think I’m in a ’90s comedy where I was cursed to make people think I am their personal confessional booth and/or advice guru, and I don’t know what I did to deserve this. It’s also become dangerous for the people talking to me. After a lifetime of putting up with weird conversations, I’ve started just giving out random horrible advice to see if people will take it. A stranger at a party tells me that he doesn’t know if he loves his wife? I say try and bring up the topic of a mistress with her and see if how she feels about it. If a random dude at the gym starts talking to me about how women just use the Stairmaster to show off, I’m going to tell him that he should grab the one next to them and climb it backwards because that sounds entertaining for me to watch.
Oh, and that person who asked me about the apple cider vinegar? You bet your ass I told her it would work to cure constipation, but only if she mixed it with cottage cheese. Maybe I’m an asshole, but after dealing with uncomfortable interactions my whole life, I’ve decided I’m at least going to use them to amuse myself. .
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