Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard

I went to see Twilight: The Movie with some teacher buddies last Saturday. I had read the whole book series and was excited (Harry Potter-style) to see the film. My experiences at Cinemark made me want to write about two things:

1. Getting along with girls (I hope none of them read it. I should unlink PM from my regular blog.)
2. Human yearning?

1. I got invited to see this movie by my friend and fellow English teacher at school (we'll call her Blondie). We're kind of friends by default--we are both aware that we have nothing in common but we went through grad school together and are now working in the same place (I recommended her for the job, actually). Blondie is a person with very blond hair (obviously) and lots of eyeliner who gets drunk at bars more nights in the week than not and dates many macho loser type guys. Then she talks about her adventures in the teacher's lounge and says things like "how do I get myself into these situations?" and lets other teachers play Life Coach with her.

All that being said, she's a nice person and we get along pretty well as long as we don't spend too much time talking about her drama. But the bigger social problem is, we don't actually have anything to talk about.

So when I get invited to the movie, I think: "I could see a movie with just about anyone." Also, that this would be a way to show her that I'm willing to hang out every once in a while (I usually dog out) so that I wouldn't look like I never want to. Gee, that looks pretty awful once you type it out.

Saturday: two other teachers join us. One's a science teacher from our school and one's from another school (friend of science teacher). Science teacher is 36 years old with dyed black hair and piercing on the inside swirly part of her ear (I don't know what that's called, but it's notable for a teacher). Teacher from other school has long brown hair and talks about her dogs. Both are nice, but here's what lunch was like:

The three girls "joke" back and forth about how they are all sluts and basically take turns telling stories about these lame guys that they are not really dating but who just WON'T stop calling and texting. They've all got their phones out on the table and are sending or receiving texts throughout the conversation. What was most boring about this lunch was that this "You're a slut, no you're a slut" exchange was standing in for humor. That was it! Nothing interesting or funny was said the whole time, and nobody was asking questions and listening to anyone else, either. It was just taking turns talking. I just kept thinking I'd be having such a good time if my other friends who are actually fun and funny were here.

The high schooler in me couldn't help but wonder if this was what it was like to hang out with the popular girls. I think a couple of years ago, this lunch would have made me feel inadequate or boring and I would have believed in the Sex in the City charade, but this time it was just plain boring, and a little sad (in an empty way).

But there's this other part of me that recognizes my own superiority complex--the older I get, the more ridiculous it is for me to stereotype people like we're all in high school and the harder it gets to ignore the complexities of people's lives (as Fermi says: the XY axis isn't complicated enough to chart someone's life).

What we did all have in common at that table was that we are all self-aware and we want for people to think we're interesting, fun, sexy, and smart. We just have different ideas of what those qualities are.

But, the thing that still pisses me off every once in awhile is when I feel Blondie stereotyping me as a complete square. She has this look of utter shock when she asks me what I did over the weekend and it involved leaving my house. She also says things like "You don't seem like the type of person who would..." a lot. I mean really, is going to bars the only thing that makes a person (and a grown-ass person, I might add) interesting? I know it's rough to be single sometimes, but can't you all stop trying to one-up each other with what you think are wild n' crazy tales that you were the first one to experience? Nobody wants to sit there and listen just so you can feel interesting while telling it!

Why do you care what she thinks? you might be thinking. Good point.

This is getting lengthy, so I'll have to write about human yearning some other time.


Fermi said...

I often think that squares are the only interesting ones. :) It sucks that you don't have really cool people from work to hang out with!

Sarah D. said...

Heh: "You're a slut. No, you're a slut!"
We're ALL sluts!!! Cue raucous, self-important laughter.
Were your colleagues to act like they worked at a high school, as opposed to acting like they attend one, you probably wouldn't high-school-steretype them.
I'm just sayin.
MAN I wish I could have Blondie's job.

Princess Pointful said...

Ugh. Sounds a little painful.
It is funny how, as kids, friendships seem to just flow so naturally, but as adults, you have to suffer through these painful lunches every once in a while just to make sure you really don't want to be friends with someone.