Brother: Is it illegal to sleep in your own car?
Me: It is if you’re driving it.
Father: I guess you’ll be wanting to do up the Chinky (the Fiat I share with my brother) with spoilers and exhaust systems, eh, male fruit of my loins?
Me: Indeed he’s not. I’m going to get some pink flower stickers and a crystal for the rearview mirror and a nodding dog, or maybe a nodding cat if you can get them, or maybe a whole row of nodding cats. Pink ones.
Father: ... (his standard response to me)
My father, who’s a builder by trade and a tinkerer by nature, was fascinated by the exhibition. My mother was in it for the free pens and lollipops, and my brother and I got mistaken for a couple who wanted to build a house. Clearly genetics went drastically awry in the seven years between us.
Honestly, I think I exude some pheromone that attracts freaks. Brother and I were merely admiring a plasma screen TV (another thing I may put in my car) when the exhibitor jumped on us and started telling me all about cables. From literally about four inches away. I don’t appreciate bad breath at the best of times, and especially not when I have to inhale it in lieu of my own air. I didn’t know how to say, “I just like the pretty TV,” and thus now know far more about cables than I ever wanted to, and had him stare down my top far longer than a married man ever should.
On the way out, another old freak told me ‘I love your bag!’ Or rather he shouted it. Everyone in the entire hall heard it. Granted it is a very nice bag, very sparkly and so on, but I really think old men’s opinions on it needn’t be shared, with me or quite frankly anyone.
But these encounters pale beside the one I had in the bank last week. I needed to transfer money out an account and close it, because it held a grand total of thirteen euro. The young teller – who incidentally had ginger hair, the most horrible fingernails I’ve seen this side of the sixteenth century and a heat rash that got worse as the transaction proceeded – kept asking me all these questions, like where I went to college and what faculty I was in and my mobile number and if I was single and if I had my own house. (He informed me he had his own house. Why he supposed I cared I can’t imagine.) I assumed at the time it was standard procedure (in shutting down an account, though?). My mother came over and asked how he was getting on. ‘Painfully slowly’ was the correct answer I didn't give. She said something about how pitifully small my savings were and he answered: “Yes, when we run away and get married thirteen euro won't take us far.”
And let us not forget the guy on bebo who decided he fancied me madly because of my blog. My blog. Ye gods. I wish I knew what part of me suggests to these people that I’m nice or something, so I could AMPUTATE IT. Honestly. I need to get a tattoo on my forehead saying ‘You’re ugly and I’m shallow.’