Peer pressure. The struggle is real. However, I’ve decided to finally put my foot down on a few things. I’m just not doing them anymore people. I’m not. And no one can make me. I feel like a child that has suddenly discovered the word “no,” and it’s liberating as all hell. (Typically I wouldn’t say something like “as all hell” because peer pressure tells me that it sounds stupid. And that’s because it does).
Andy’s Official Count Me Out List
1. Cheering louder a second time. I am so sick of this gimmick. It inevitably happens at the beginning of every concert, performance, etc. You know the drill…
Entertainer: “How are y’all doin tonight?!”
Entertainer is disappointed.
Entertainer: Oh come on…Y’all can do better than that! I said (shouting now) HOW’ER Y’ALL DOIN’ TONIGHT?!
Crowd cheers louder.
*Note that it isn’t until the entertainer asks the question more enthusiastically that they get the more enthusiastic response.
Listen entertainer. Here’s how it works, see. I pay you to entertain me. And if you entertain me to the level at which I’m voluntarily shouting for joy because I feel that great, so be it. We all win. But you don’t get to pressure me into pretending to feel great before you’ve even started. It’s just lazy. So I hereby exempt myself. I won’t do it anymore. I won’t shout louder.
2. Split a check.
Everyone feels bad for the waitress or waiter (or server or whatever we’re supposed to call them because they are people too) if a group asks for separate checks. It’s always,”Oh we’ll just figure it out at the end; we don’t want to make the server deal with it.” Well sorry if this makes me the bad guy, but I do want the server deal with it. Because I’m a heartless wretch who thinks I’m better than the server? No, because they are getting paid to help us do these things. I just paid about 300% more for a meal I could have made myself because I wanted to feel relaxed and cared for, spoiled even. And now I’m going out of my way to save the person I’m paying to go out of his way for me, from having to go out of his way? No way. I hate having to do the math at the end of the night. First, because I hate math. I don’t remember how to do it (yes, even simple subtraction) and second because at the end, everyone always feels screwed somehow. You end up grumbling to yourself “Well, I only got a water and now we’re splitting the check into 10 equal parts and giving this waitress a 40% tip because we’re scared we don’t know how to do math, because we don’t.” From now on, I’m requesting my own check. And if that’s asking the server to provide an extra service, then maybe I’ll give them a better tip…maybe.
I’m a woman and therefore I enjoy gluing things together, using markers, and spending 45 minutes cleaning up afterward.
Well here’s the truth, I hate it. I feel pressure to come up with something original then fail, or I try to copy someone else’s idea and fail miserably. And to top it off, something always goes wrong with mine. The glue won’t stick, the glue is too heavy, my pen runs out of ink, I touch it before it’s dried, I didn’t sand it enough. And for what? For what I ask you? So I can have some little Kindergarten art project hang up in my home for years because I’d hate to throw away something I already wasted so much time on? Forget it. I quit crafts.
4. Wear makeup.
I have big plans for a whole separate post on this. So let this be a teaser…I don’t feel like it’s fair for the whole world to expect me to put paint on my face in order for me to be taken serious. As if it’s a sign of respect.
Oh you’re a woman? Well let me let you in on a little secret…nobody wants you showing your face around these parts.
I don’t get it. Sure, I’ll dress nice, I’ll be hygienic, but why should I have to alter my face in order for society to be ok with me leaving the house? Well guess what society, I’m coming out anyway. I’m unleashing this natural face of mine, whether you find it hideous or not. And no, I’m not tired…
5. Tip Jars. What exactly do these little shops think they are getting a tip for? For the proper exchange of goods? For doing their job well? Talk to your boss. That’s called a bonus. Do I get a tip for being a nice customer? For giving you exact change and being pleasant? No, because that was an expectation. So I refuse to feel awkward when that not-so-little “tip jar” sits between us and I don’t do anything about it.
6. Fake loving a song. This one isn’t very applicable anymore. It’s more like I wish I could go back in time to high school dances and tell my 15 year-old-self:
Look you’re tearing it up out there. Really you are sweating about 5 times more than the most overweight male here. It’s alright to sit this one out. Go hydrate. The DJ should know that Shook Me All Night Long, Pour Some Sugar On Me, Love Shack, and Cupid Shuffle and (I’m sorry) even Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ really aren’t that great to dance to.
Also I hate having to fake like I know the lyrics. You know it’s not a good dance song when you look weird simply dancing to it, and not lip syncing too.
7. Appreciate ALL classic literature. Look English teachers, I appreciate what you’re trying to do. I get that Great Expectations was really exciting in 1860. But it’s not anymore. We’ve evolved. We’re doing a better job. Don’t get me wrong, I actually love many classic novels, but I don’t want to feel like I’m admitting to some kind of intellectual inferiority if I don’t love every single thing Shakespeare wrote, or even one of them.
8. Let your dog lick me. Just because you’ve decided it’s their way of “giving you kisses,” doesn’t mean I do. I don’t like your dog sampling the salt of my clean skin. And why should that offend you? I don’t want you to lick me either. It’s really nothing personal. Therefore if your dog tries to lick me, I’m going to have to push it off my lap. Chances are, I didn’t want it on my lap either.
I’m sure eventually I’ll add more to this list as I get older, like saying please and thank you, shaving my armpits…frivolous stuff like that.