Saturday, March 07, 2009

Meeting The Suburban Playboy

Trying To Get Out More, Part 1. The first in an occasional series in which I leave the house, only to end up annoyed by a fellow human being.

The other morning I’d finished up in the gym, but a man perhaps ten years younger than me was blocking access to my locker because he was taking his stuff out of the closet above. No problem, I can wait. Except that he wasn’t really accessing his locker, he was just standing there checking his mobile device for new e-mails. Obviously an important bloke - he’d been in the gym an hour, and someone could have sent him a crucial communication in that time. Except you’re not that important that work doesn’t miss you when you skip out to the gym mid-morning, eh? Irritation factor: 5%.

I notice a tattoo near his ankle of the Playboy bunny. Blocking me from getting to my locker’s one thing, doing it while sporting a crass symbol of overt vanity quite another. If you’re such a playboy, why’s it not tattooed on your forehead, super-dick? Let’s show some conviction here. Or do women look at your face, snigger at your feckless expression, look down in embarrassment and then think, “Oh wait, he has a playboy bunny tattoo, he must be a stud-butt after all.” Irritation factor: a steep climb to 60%.

Once I finally get to my locker and pack up and leave, bunny boy follows me out to the car park. You know how it is - you’re trying to just get away from someone, for good, for ever, and they keep hanging in there, as though they’ve been specially commissioned to irritate the crap out of you for the whole day. Finally, he goes the wrong way round the car park’s one-way system in his SU fucking V and tries to cut me off at the exit. But I step on it and get in there first and leave him behind at the next light. Irritation factor: a climb to a cuss-gorging 90% before levelling and descending in the rear-view mirror to zero.

How can I judge this man without having heard him speak a single word? Perhaps he was checking his messages because a family member had been in a car accident and he was awaiting a health status update. Perhaps he had a Playboy symbol tattooed on his leg as the result of a cruel hazing ritual at college where he’d been tied down and branded, and now he was having it slowly removed through long and painful laser surgery. What if I’d run over a little toddler as I accelerated to stop him cutting me off at the car park exit, and he’d then testified that it was all his fault for acting like an arrogant, SUV-driving, Blackberry-checking, Playboy tattoo-toting twat?

Somewhere, maybe, there’s a blog entry at about a single man’s annoyance at the sneering, impatient, middle-aged, Passat-driving lowlife that cut him off aggressively at the gym’s car park exit. All bitter just because he lost the race, ha!


No Good Boyo said...

The man is a lightweight irritant, Pop. Instead of the tattoo he ought to have been wearing a sweatshirt with a demeaning image, and checking your emails is nothing compared to braying into a phone about "Chaz & Emma", "dinner", "maxing" something and obviously not understanding 30 Rock.

Still, your Roderick-Usher-like sensitivity to the bell ends of this world keeps us on our toes.

"Sitôt qu'on le touche il résonne"

Stay-At-Home Indie-Pop said...

Ashamed to say, I've never read any Poe. If there's one thing your response to this poor blog post brings about, it will be the push required finally to do so. Glad to be keeping you on your toes, though.

No Good Boyo said...

Eliot and Nabokov agreed that only the adolescent male mind could honestly enjoy Poe, so that's you and me account for.

His style was rather gamey, and it took the genius of Roger Corman to channel his musty tales into fine art through the sounding bell of Vincent Price, the Greatest Living Welsh.