Never, EVER Hire Her As A Babysitter

, , , , , , | Friendly | November 16, 2019

(I’m in beauty school, currently in the hairdressing program. For those who don’t know, this is a program that comes with quite a bit of equipment — everything from combs and a hairdryer to a “mannequin head” on which to practice haircuts and styles. I have a suitcase that I can fit most of my tools into, but my mannequin head doesn’t quite fit. Picture a young woman with hot pink hair carrying what is essentially a disembodied plastic head around on the bus every morning and evening. On this particular occasion I’m gathering up all my stuff to get off the bus, and I pick up my mannequin head by the hair, as that tends to be the easiest, most secure way to hang onto it. As I lift the head, the woman sitting across from me makes this cheerful comment:) 

Woman: “I like your baby!”

Me: *thinking* “It’s actually a severed head, but okay.”

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Swim Gang!

, , , , , | Friendly | November 15, 2019

(One summer evening when I’m in my late teens or early twenties, a few friends and I go to a free concert at a local public beach. During a break in the concert, two of my friends and I walk to a quieter, less crowded area of the beach to talk a bit. As we’re talking, a boy who appears to be 10 to 12 years old comes up to us. For context, all of the people involved in this story are white males.)

Boy: “Excuse me, you’re not allowed to go swimming right now. There’s no lifeguard on duty.”

(We’re fully clothed and not standing close to the water, so it should be reasonably obvious that we have no intention of going in. Nevertheless, I figure the kid is just trying to be helpful. I respond politely:)

Me: “Don’t worry; we weren’t planning to go swimming. Thanks anyway.”

(He seems satisfied with that answer and wanders off. We think this is the end of it and we go back to our conversation, but not three minutes later, the kid is back.)

Boy: “Excuse me. Are you three a gang?”

Me: “Um… no.”

Boy: “We don’t like gangs here. If you’re a gang, I’m going to have to kick you off the beach.”

(Too bewildered to say anything, we just stared at him in shock as he wandered away again. Not surprisingly, no one kicked us off the beach, but our newfound status as a “gang” became a running joke for several years thereafter.)

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Hit The Motherlode

, , , , , , | Friendly Romantic | November 15, 2019

(I’m in my apartment with my girlfriend playing a medieval MMO. She’s on her laptop out in the kitchen, while I’m in my office on my desktop. We’re hanging out in the starting town when a random low-level player starts following me. Note: I’m 30 and she’s 27, and we’ve both been playing this game together since high school.)

Random Player: “Hey, [My Username]!”

Me: “Yes?”

Random Player: “Free money, please?”

Me: “You can make money by killing goblins or cows, or by fishing or mining.”

Random Player: “I don’t want to do that! Give me 500k or I’ll do your mom in bed!”

Me: “Okay, that’s actually very disturbing.”

Random Player: “What, can’t handle me sleeping with your mom?”

Girlfriend: “No, he means it’s disturbing that you’re turned on by sixty-year-old married women.”

(The random player briefly stands there, silent, and then runs off without saying another word.)

Me: *shouting out of my office to my girlfriend* “You’re definitely a keeper, babe!”

(She responded by making her avatar blow my avatar a kiss in-game. A moment later, she waltzed into my office and gave me a kiss on the cheek. We have now been married for three years, and we still play that MMO together from time to time.)

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Jehovah’s Witless: The Musical

, , , , , | Friendly | November 14, 2019

(My house gets a lot of Jehovah’s Witnesses. When I leave for college, my parents are politely refusing them, which isn’t working so well. When I come back from college for the winter break, my parents have developed an unusual way to deal with them.)

Witness: “Have you heard of Jesus Christ, our Lord and savior?”

Mom: “Oh, come in, come in! I have just made lunch. Are you hungry? You look hungry! Come!”

(The missionaries come in, taking in the traditional Indian furniture and Carnatic music coming from the kitchen.)

Witness: “We’re here to tell you about Jesus–”

Mom: “Eat, no? Have some more! You’re so skinny!”

Witness: “We’re here to tell you about Jesus–”

Mom: “I have heard of this Jesus fellow.” *to my dad* “Dai! Konni Yēsudās karnāṭik pāṭalu vēyaṇḍi!” *to the missionaries* “My husband is putting on some carnatic songs of Yesudas. You know, his name means ‘servant to Christ.’”

Singer: “Manasulōni marmamulu telusukō marirakṣata marakaṭaṅgā nā…”

Dad: “I really love this song. So beautiful. Here, Saint Tyāgarāja is saying, ‘O Emerald-skinned Rāma who protects devotees, please know the trouble in my heart!’ Is it not so poetic? The Śud’dha hindōḷaṁ is such a beautiful raga. It is a pity it is so under-utilised.”

(The missionaries glance at each other. My father goes on and on about the song while my mother continues anxiously feeding them as if they were the ones who just came back from college.)

Singer: “…tyāgarāja yōga vaibhavaṁ sadāśivaṁ śrī tyāgarāja yōga vaibhavaṁ sadāśrayāmi tyāgarāja yōga vaibhavaṁ agarāja yōga vaibhavaṁ rājā yōga vaibhavaṁ yōga vaibhavaṁ vaibhavaṁ bhāvaṁ vaṁ śrī…”

Dad: “Ah, this is another beautiful song. The Ānanda Bhairavi feeling is brought out so beautifully. And the way that Saint Dīkṣitār has repeated the same line with taking out the few syllables at the beginning and created new meanings every time that are still appropriate prayers to Lord Śiva. Superb!”

(He goes on and on like this and the witnesses become ever more anxious. My mother starts mixing the perugu annaṁ to finish the meal.)

Singer: “…ilalō praṇatārti haruḍanucu pērevaridirē śaṅkaruḍani (nīkilalō)…”

Dad: “Another great song. In this song, Saint Tyāgarāja is asking of Lord Śiva why he–”

Witness: “Okay, that’s enough. You know, you really ought to try reading the Bible sometime. You really should. You need Jesus to keep you on the path to Heaven.”

Dad: “No, no! We are perfectly fine with our gods. We shall attain mōkṣa through Śiva, Rāma, Pārvati, Subrahmaṇya, Lakṣmi, Pārvati, and all. And if we fail, we will see you in the heavens. But only for a short while, for we get another chance at it, as well.”

Witness: “Well, thanks for the meal. It was lovely. I do hope you’ll reconsider!”

(One of them now comes round once a month to the nearby Hindu temple to listen to Carnatic music with us!)

Jehovah’s Witless, Part 17
Jehovah’s Witless, Part 16
Jehovah’s Witless, Part 15

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How Can I Offend Thee, Let Me Count The Ways

, , , , , | Friendly | November 14, 2019

(My best friend’s thirteen-year-old sister has autism. I stop at a bookstore to find a book for her. My best friend, his sister, and I get out of the car.)

Customer: “Hey!”

(We look up as we enter the store. This customer is coming toward us, clearly angry. He slaps my best friend in the face.)

Best Friend: “What the h*** was that for?!”

Customer: “Oh, so, you act all innocent? I know what you’re doing.”

Best Friend: “Dude, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

Customer: “Parking in the disabled space, you piece of s***! You really think you wouldn’t get caught eventually?”

Me: “It’s a mistake.”

Customer: “D*** right, it’s a f****** mistake! You aren’t disabled!”

Me: “So, people with autism aren’t allowed in handicapped spaces because they don’t look disabled?”

Customer: “Oh, f*** off!”

Best Friend: “My sister has autism.”

(The customer looks at my sister, who’s looking off in another direction.)

Customer: “Nice rack.”

Me: “I’m getting security. She’s thirteen.”

Customer: “Nice rack. I’d have her if she wasn’t [ableist slur].”

(Security arrested him and we got on with shopping another day.)

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