I'm trying to keep my business, my triplets, and my waistline under control. I excel at one of those, fail at another one of those, and one is a work in progress. Which is which is day dependant.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Apparently I am Scary

Many, many times on this blog I've talked about how I am socially awkward and kinda strange around new people and shy and a bit...just...not so comfortable in a lot of situations. My real-life friends find these claims a little odd, but they just nod and agree because it seems like the right thing to do. However, in recent weeks, two separate people have told me that they think I am scary. One in fact said he was worried that I would eat him alive.

I'm totally not kidding.

*insert maniac laughter* Me? Scary? Eat you alive? WHAT? Are you for serious?

Let's examine the facts here, shall we? Okay, so I'm tall. And for a while there, very wide and now not as wide. But I am overall a big person...and most people of normal size (height or width) find bigger people kinda intimidating. It's why bouncers at clubs are not normally 5'5" and pro wrestlers are generally not thin supermodels (even the female ones!) Because smaller people (or even more 'average' people) aren't really scary enough to do those jobs effectively. So I get that in the physical world, I could be considered scary purely by virtue of outward appearances. (Although mind you, Santa and Mrs Claus are none too small and nobody finds them scary, do they?) (And I don't understand how, when my "uniform" is generally jeans and a shlumpy t-shirt, that's scary, but whatever.)

In addition to being big, I'm also pretty loud. Not only in volume (although there too) but also in so far as I am usually willing to say my piece (or I've been forced into saying it.) Plus I'm no good at being the shrinking violet, so I tend to be noticed because I am often the student who raises their hand in class, the mother in the meeting who has something to say, the employee who asks all the annoying questions. I'm also a spectacular interrupter, so I'll rail-road right over whatever you're saying because what I have to say is generally of better quality anyway. Nobody likes an interrupter. They're loud and talking over you and ignoring what you have to say and that, my friends, is apparently also intimidating.

I'm big and I'm loud...and to complete the trifecta of scariness, I'm also smart and not shy about being smart. Which, frankly, to a lot of people can be kinda of confronting, because they see smart people as some sort of threat to their well-being. Smart people question the status quo. Smart people generally 'get' things faster than others and will quite often point out the things which could be done better or faster (they're not obnoxious, they just can't help themselves.) Smart people, in short, are scary because you think they have something you don't...and they actually do. Knowledge is power and those people have got it in spades, and this makes them a threat even when they aren't.

In both cases of people telling me they find me scary, they both know me fairly well but neither has spent any real amount of time with me physically. So they don't really have that first excuse, the second excuse *might* count just a wee bit, and the third excuse is crap because they are both as smart or smarter than I am. So I don't get how on earth I can be considered scary to either of those people. I really don't. Does it change your opinion of this situation if I tell you that both people in question here are men? Does it change your opinion of this situation if I tell you that, with both people, all sorts of 'taboo' topics like sex and relationships and whatnot have been discussed and are generally considered par for the course...and in all cases I can hold my own quite well?

Is it just because men are generally scared of women who can speak their minds and are not afraid to do so?

Me being me, I did some research and asked a bunch of friends what they thought about this whole "emzee is scary" business. Most of them had the, "You? Scary? Yeah, right!" response...but more than one also said that, sure, I probably DO give off the intimidation vibe even though I don't mean to. Plus (and this is my own interpretation), when you are physically like me but socially weird, your silence can be mistaken for stand-offishness or seeming not to give a shit about anyone else. Like that conference I went to - remember that? Where I spent the entire time hiding behind my mobile phone? I'm sure my behaviour gave the impression of, "I'm wwwaaayyyy too fucking important to talk to or mingle with the likes of you lot!" more than it did, "I'm shy and hiding behind this phone, please won't one of you come up to me and say hi?"

Still... I find it very hard to marry my knowledge of who I am with the descriptor of 'scary.' In both cases I told these men that once they know me better physically (in terms of spending more time in each other's company, not knowing them biblically. Sheesh!) they would probably realise just how fantastically UN-scary I really am. So un-scary as to be almost fluffy white lamb-like (as long as you've seen a 5'11"3/4" lamb in a pasture somewhere.) I guess what I'm saying to them is, don't judge this book by it's cover.

In the meantime, though, I think I'm going to go oil my whip.

1 comment:

Danielle said...

I am telling ya, we are twins. I JUST had this discussion this morning.

My best friend once again this year is teaching my eldest daughter. She also taught her last year. A parent came in yesterday morning to ask her a question about XYZ. Belinda told her to come ask me, and the parent said "ooohhh...I don't wanna ask THAT mother. She is scary". Bel and I had a good chuckle over this, as I am the least scariest person around, yet I have a rule not to "do" school mums, so obviously give off the vibe "don't come near me or I will kill you". Suits me fine. Stay away from me school mums.