In the crazy rainy weather that we southern Californians are not accustomed to, I hurriedly drop off Little at school. As I pull in to the DRIVE-THRU drop off lane, I notice the truck two vehicles in front of me appears to be parked. If you know anything about school drop- off lanes, you know there is an etiquette, a set of expectations and rules that must be followed so that students arrive at school on time. Someone, that shall remain nameless, simply because I don’t know his name, did not follow the rules this week. See, the drop-off lane at Allen Avenue Elementary School is about 20 feet from the stop light, and if anyone doesn’t follow the set of undefined procedures, then it throws the whole morning drop-off routine into chaos.
So, I realize shortly after stopping behind a vehicle, that the truck ahead of it was not planning to move. Meanwhile, I’m trapped in the red zone and have to drive around to the open space in the drop-off area, whilst cars are passing on the left through the traffic signal. I finally get around the parked truck and give him the hairy eyeball as I pass, and then drop off Little. (See above, that’s my best hairy eyeball pose. Take it from me, wild & crazy bedhead helps with the hairy eyeball pose.) As I turn left make a U-turn and go back in the same direction I had my opportunity; I rolled down my window to speak to the man in the truck who had his window rolled down and was staring at his cell phone.
Me:”Uh, excuse me! The lane you’re in is a drive-thru lane. When you don’t pull forward it backs up all the traffic into the red zone and the stop light.”
Truck Man: “My truck’s broke! I’m on the phone trying to get someone to come out and fix it.”
Me: “Turn your hazard lights on, so the people behind you know to pass.”
Truck Man: “My truck’s broke.”
<<<Deep breath, Joy. Saying to self: Yes, you said that Truck Man, but the people behind you just think you’re texting on your cell phone and being extremely rude. Do I HAVE to spell it out for you? You are inconveniencing all of us this morning! Turn your hazards on, for goodness sake!>>>
Courtesy isn’t common to some people. This bums me out, ticks me off, and makes me want to go into law enforcement (for about 2 minutes, just so I can give him a ticket for stupidity). I would have tutted at him if I had known what tutting was yesterday morning. I will explain tutting soon. Tutting is British. My reaction in this situation was very American and confrontational.
To make myself feel better today, I started Netflix binging a show called Very British Problems. I had no idea, that, as a culture, they have so many specific awkward social problems. I assumed that these kinds of problems were more specific to introverts, but it seems that, it’s a problem for a whole group of people. This is brilliant. Tutting is when “we want to show you that we’re annoyed or we don’t like something, but we don’t want to tell you, we’ll just make this noise, which, is made to be like a happy medium.” The British have been tutting since the early 16th Century. It’s a sound you make with your mouth, like a naughty scolding sound. See below.
I avoid conversations with people I know, in public. I don’t pretend to be on my cell phone, although this isn’t a bad idea. I love you all, but I will go to great lengths to avoid you, if I’m not in the mood to have small talk or if I’m in a hurry. Don’t hate me.
I’ve often been disturbed by the filler phrase, “Have a nice day!” It’s such a relief to know that I’m not the only one. “Have a nice day!” has evolved to “Have a good one.” What the hell does that mean? Have a good what? I don’t have to have a good anything if I don’t want to.
I can totally relate to the social awkwardness of my British friends.
Share your favorite or most unfavorite adherences to social courtesies.
Until next Friday. Love you loves.
Gastric Bypass Update:
A couple of snacks that are my go-to fillers are the Enlightened Roasted Broad Beans (fava beans) with 7 grams of protein per serving & the Bai Coconut drinks all variations. I eat and drink these every day. Just thought you’d like to know and if you come over for a social visit, I might just offer you either of these snacks because I love them so much. I won’t tell you to “Have a nice day!”