A stranger actually called me “naughty” yesterday. “Naughty”! And not in a good way.
What I did might have been inappropriate, but “naughty”? Come on! What am I, five-years-old?
Here’s the situation. I’m sitting on a patio with my good friend Venus discussing love, loss and other personal traumas. You know, topics of interest to well-trained Drama Queens who can always end a good story with a witty self-deprecating twist. In essence, we were having a good time sitting on a patio and discussing intimate things, when a guy came out of the building next to us and started pacing back and forth talking on his cell phone.
No biggie, obviously he is having his own drama and since he’s brought it to the busy street we figure he’ll wrap it up fairly quickly or walk away. We glance at him and continue our conversation.
But he doesn’t wrap up or walk away. In fact, what he does is start talking louder and gesticulating.
Our private and intimate conversation is now being overridden by his conversation. He’s not wrapping up. He’s getting more engaged. It’s been going on for minutes now. And he’s starting to get less-than-polite glances from us. His response? Turn his back and rest his butt on the patio railing right beside Venus. Seriously!
So, being the polite and patient women we are, we stop talking, sip our coffees and wait for him to finish up and remove himself from our space. After a couple more minutes, I decide that a polite suggestion to take it elsewhere is the best idea.
I stand up, lean forward and say “Excuse me.” A little louder “Excuse Me?”. Once more with a voice that will carry, but hopefully not into his cell, “Excuse ME!”
Not even a twitch of recognition. So I reach out my hand and touch his shoulder gently with my fingertips and repeat “Excuse Me”. Leisurely, he lifts himself off the railing and turns, hand over the cell “yes?”
“Could you please go a little further away?” He looks me up and down, turns, and then starts pacing again. Luckily, talking more quietly.
Yay! We can go back to our conversation which we did with gusto. Then, in the midst of over-sharing, he interjects “That was Naughty, what you did!”.
We look at him incredulously!
“That was naughty, touching me like that. You should have gotten up and moved,” that got him a couple of raised eyebrows.
“You were naughty. You shouldn’t have touched me. You should have walked around the patio and come to talk to me”, OMG, he’s kidding right? The last time a man called me naughty I did way more than just touch him lightly on the shoulder.
But personal space is personal space, so I responded, “you’re right. I shouldn’t have touched you. I’m sorry for that.”
“Okay, and I was talking too loudly so I’m sorry for that too.”
This guy must have kids, because you don’t talk to adults like that. “Naughty”, my ass!
Inappropriate, invasive, surprising, disconcerting – perhaps.
But please if you are talking to an adult save “naughty” for something fun, would ya!