As she stood in line waiting for the customer ahead to clear at the counter, she looked around observing her surroundings like she always did. She never got bored of queuing at a supermarket. She is a very observant person who enjoys watching the real reality shows of life created by real people.
As she looked around her eyes fell on him. “Oh no!” She exclaimed silently dreading his approach. He was standing afar off holding a shopping basket. She sensed that he had been watching her for a while maybe even while she had been shopping. Then he placed himself in her line of sight looking around as if trying to find a shop attendant to help him. When his eyes met hers his face produced a beaming smile as he waved at her and quickly proceeded to make his way to her.
‘Hi Dear,” he greeted her cheerfully. To her that kind of talk was the most irritating kind of talk she ever heard. It brought up a feeling of anger in her. ‘Hi’, she reluctantly responded. Without noticing her anger, or so it seemed, he launched into a fully fledged conversation about something. Ruth did not listen to what he was saying because she was still trying to calm herself down and decline the invitation by her insides to launch into a tirade of insults.
She did not believe that the guy didn’t know that she didn’t like his behaviour. She never returned his calls or checked up on him or accepted any of his invitations to do anything with him. At times, after many months of silence, the guy would suddenly resurface on Ruth’s phone and graciously she would communicate with him. He never failed to irritate her with what Ruth considered to be name calling. To her utter shock and amazement, he would use the names ‘dear’ or ‘sweerie’ or ‘darling’ or even ‘honey’ to address her. And that would be the end of any hope he might have had of even a superficial friendship with her.
When she got home, Ruth pondered about that guy who has no respect for her at all as far as she was concerned. Somebody who she knows almost nothing of other than some things he mentioned about what he does and whatever else imagining that he can address her with such names. What could he possibly be thinking? Because he disappeared as suddenly as he appeared in her life, she was ok just ignoring him and making him feel as unwanted as possible.
She knew that if she even told him off for his annoying deeds, he might think she is correcting him in the interests of building a relationship with him. What if he then stopped calling her names? Would she be willing to meet up with him? She was sure that if she told him off, he would cheerfully promise never to call her names ever again and then proceed to ask her out. What would she do then? She was sure that promise would not last.
No. It wasn’t just the name calling. Although the guy talked a lot he didn’t say much. She didn’t understand him and for her that was what mattered. She didn’t think that people who had the potential of being her friends should strike her as strange. She had made many mistakes before in the friendships she used to have. Her motto now was to keep her life easy. Trying to understand anyone was never her cup of tea. She therefore spent very little time thinking about that guy. She had grown to see him as a form of entertainment.
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