Rosie’s take on… People making you see like an asshole
I like to think that I care about the important things. I care about gay people being able to get married, I care about people less fortunate than myself, I care about people in other countries, I care about kids with cancer.
But somehow there’s always someone out there trying to make me, and other Joe Blow citizens, look like assholes that don’t care about anyone but themselves.
Today I was walking through the shopping centre, and just like every other time I walk through just about any shopping centre, one of the people from those little stalls in the middle tried to talk to me.
Those stalls are tricky. It can be anything from paintball people trying to get you to sign up, to people trying to enter you in a competition, to people from charities asking for donations. You try really hard to keep your head down and not make eye contact, because if they engage you in conversation, you know you’ll be trapped for at least 10 minutes, because damn those people can talk. I don’t even glance up from where my eyes are resolutely glued to the floor, just in case they see it as an invitation to approach me. I’m all resting bitch face, eyes down, knees to chest as I power past them.
But I have trouble with feeling completely rude, so if they happen to speak out to me, I can never completely ignore them with zero acknowledgment. I always have a little response up my sleeve ready to go, as well as keeping the “I’m rushing off because I’m, like, super busy” air around me. Because, lets be real, they don’t need to know I’m going home to re-watch season 1 of New Girl. So today when one of the ladies spoke to me, before I could even figure out what her stall was for, before she could even finish, in my “I’m super rushed and suuuper busy” voice I said “no thanks”.
I should’ve listened to what she said before I responded.
Because turns out she said “would you like to write a short message for the sick children?” And I was all like “no thanks”. Like, “no thanks; sick kids? Not my problem. Small messages to brighten up their day? No thanks.” Awesome. I’m so proud of myself.
I keep a few different responses up my sleeve and sort of swap between them when a situation like this arises. The most important thing is to make sure they don’t fully get to finish their spiel, or you’ll be sucked in.
When I was in New York last year, I remember one of the people handing out flyers and collecting money in tins on the street approached me. I employed my usual response of head down, no eye contact, muttering “no, sorry”. I was so happy with myself when I realised he’d asked “do you care about the homeless?” Nope, sorry. Guess not. Guess I don’t care about the homeless at all.
A while ago I had a door knocker come to my door collecting for charity. Look, I’m not against donating to charity, I’m really not. But probably being approached while I’m in the middle of a nap in my own home isn’t the best way to make me want to give money to a charity I know nothing about. I remember politely declining this guys invitation to give him money from my doorstep, that for all I know could be going towards his meth addiction. And instead of giving up and leaving, he looked around the front yard of my house and past my shoulder into the house, and said “how old are you, 20 ish? Looks like you’re doing pretty well for yourself.” Like okay, thanks buddy. Now I’m the asshole for refusing to help charity when apparently I can clearly afford to. And obviously, this stranger would know about my financial situation better than myself. I mean, I only own the bank account. How am I to know how much it contains?
Whenever Facebook releases those templates for profile pictures, like the rainbow one for gay marriage, or when people change theirs to “pray for (a country where a disaster/terrorist attack has just happened)”, those of us that don’t join in like look heartless bitches. I am literally so passionate about legalising same sex marriage, I am. But as soon as I decide to keep my profile picture as is, I look like I don’t care.
I’m telling you, it’s tough.
I care about gay marriage. I care about the victims in all the terrorist attacks. I care about the countries in political upheaval. I care about natural disasters. I care about charities. I care about the homeless. I care about cancer. I care about the sick children. I care about the sick animals. I care about a lot of things. Who’s to say I’m not helping out and fighting for the cause in other ways?
So if you see me in a shopping centre (accidentally) essentially saying “no, I don’t care about that family in Syria that were caught in a flood and lost their puppy, and their youngest kid has cancer and they’re trying to save money to put a roof over their heads”, just know, it’s not a good representation of me, I swear. I was caught off guard. I was just trying to get home to New Girl.