Last night someone put their arm around me while I was out.
I really hate it when people touch me. I try to send as many please-don’t-touch-me-ever signals as I can, but sometimes when I’m not focusing hard enough, someone gets through. I must have just really sucked at it yesterday because I got a hug, a close-talker, and an arm-putter-arounder.
People touching me is big deterrent to my experiencing the world outside the walls of my apartment. But alas, last night I was forced out into the open and ended up right in the arms of an arm-putter-arounder.
Since Dave’ a musician and all, I tend to find myself in all sorts of strange places. I usually just take my little pocket journal and try to think really, really hard until a blog post comes out. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always end in a post. But it rarely fails to keep people away from me and that’s really the underlying goal.
But last night at this bar, I was filing into the place and waited with Dave until he got a beer before snuggling into the masses. And while I stood there, unenthused by my surroundings, I noticed a small poodle on the bar stool beside me. It was well-groomed, uneasy, and wondering why it was in a bar, sitting on a stool. A gentleman came up beside me, put his arm around me (cringe), and drunkenly stated that it was his dog. He also said that it was “a princess” and that I “shouldn’t tell the dog he’s a boy because he thinks he’s a girl”.
I suspect that had a lot less to do with what the dog thought of itself and a lot more to do with what the gentleman thought of it. It was, after all, a dog. On a bar stool. Against its own will.
The woman beside him excused herself to go to the restroom and after 60 complete seconds, he asked me where his girlfriend went. I told him she went to the bathroom and he said she wasn’t really his girlfriend at all. She was just a friend and he was actually gay.
I told him I figured that.
It was here that it seems I offended him. He said: “what made you think that?! I’m not that drunk, am I?”
I would argue that if one must check with someone else for a confirmation on their level of drunkenness, they are indeed drunk. I would also argue that how drunk one is has nothing to do with how gay one is, which is a link that this gentleman apparently just attempted to make.
But he was really in no state for me to point out to him that he had a dog that fit in his man purse and that he exclaimed so to the bar. Or that the woman he was with didn’t seem at all interested in him and so I assumed they were not together. Or that he openly stated that his dog is “a princess” when his dog is a boy and really, just an unhappy dog in a seedy bar that can meet none of its dog-like needs.
It can, however, meet its princess-like need to socialize in trendy venues.
Knee-deep in social discomfort, I decided it was time to pinch Dave in the side until he got the memo that I needed an out. I’ve tried subtle things like ear tugs, winks, hair playing, and hand signs, but when I’m in the throes of close-talkers, arm-putter-arounders and superdrunks, those are a little too subtle for Dave to notice, all things considered. So now I just cause him physical pain until he relieves me of mine. I think it’s a pretty good arrangement.
Dave promptly put his arm around me, grabbed his beer, and escorted me to a table where I could write while we listened to the band. I began to scribble down a few notes about dogs in bars before the lights were all turned off in favor of one lone spotlight on the lead band member and I was left to mull over my distaste for people and public places.
But hey – that will teach me. Going outside one’s home can lead them to unhappy dogs on bar stools, drunk arguments with a very loud gay man, and uncomfortable touching of all kinds.
Stay inside, Jackie. Just stay inside. It’s safe there.♣