Hey. I’m talking to you.
How is this new person going to hate me?
How is this encounter with a total stranger going to go wrong?
How will I be misunderstood and hated forever?
It’s just a word. I can ignore it.
It is my right as an American to not respond.
I have the right to remain silent.
It says so in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Excuse me. I know you can hear me.
I don’t want to know what happens next
How this new person will dislike me.
Find me incredibly annoying.
It’s too painful.
How is this going to end?
How will they misinterpret my silence as a rejection and resent me
Resent me until I can’t stand to look at myself.
HOW WILL THIS RANDOM PERSON HURT ME TODAY?
How will this next encounter hurt me?
Will they make me fall in love with them and then disappoint me horribly?
Or will they fall for me too hard, too fast and make me fear them. Fear their “love”???
You ever have an ex… yes I’m talking to you… You ever have an ex who uses every pause in a conversation to tell you how much they “love” you? Not a current. An ex. Well I have.
(in the middle of telling a joke or a story) “…And then the dog took this big dump on the grass.” (stops talking to drink because, you know, your throat gets dry)
“I LOVE YOU…. (long awkward pause) You don’t have to say it back.”
“Yeah yeah but I’m sort of in the middle of telling a joke about dog poop right now.”
“It’s okay. You don’t have to say it. (another pause and then a quick) loveyou!”
That’s not love. If you loved me I wouldn’t fear you, if you loved me.
That’s not love.
You wanna be with me.
You don’t want me to be with other people.
You want to fuck me.
I don’t know what that is
That’s not love.
Hey. I know for a fact that you can hear me.
Oh come on.
Are they gonna flirt with me?
Make me feel attractive… wanted… sexy
Am I going to laugh?
Or am I going to turn around and try to flirt with them
Only to find out that I’m standing on a scarf or something?
How is this human encounter going to ruin my self-esteem today?
How the hell will this random human interaction reshape my world view?
HOW WILL I OBSESS ABOUT THE MANY WAYS I WILL MIS-HANDLE THIS SOCIAL SITUATION UNTIL THE DAY I DIE OF EMBARRASSMENT AND… I DON’T KNOW… FOOD POISONING… RICKETS
Come on. I can tell you hear me. I know you can see me. What’s wrong with you?
Oh god. I have to say something. I have to say something. I have to say something. I have to say something.
(Turns head around and says sweetly) Yes?
(Long pause breathing harder and harder in anticipation and fear)
What. Whatdoyouwant? WHAT? WHAT? whaaat?
(Now crying) What?
(Wipes tears and straightens, composes self then turns head back around and says calmly) What is it?
No not you. I was trying to get THEIR attention.