I need to tell this story because when I told it to my cousin he laughed really hard and it became a slightly-strange inside joke during my weekend visit. And it’s pretty funny, objectively speaking. Because obviously humor is objective.
When my wolf pack visited, I was really happy about it — having established the rule about no ruffies. They arrived in Edinburgh and we started with a pub, got classy for a minute in a jazz bar, and then subtracted all the classiness we’d accrued by moving on to a “club” called the Hive that featured, among other impressive attributes, a lot of 16-year-olds. We paid the cover like it was no big deal and went right in because why wouldn’t we go to a rave with teenagers? And we danced to music that alternates between the utterly recognizable “Mambo No. 5” (because it came out in 1999 — yes, that is when I listened to pop obsessively) and things that are apparently popular now, like maybe “Wild Ones” by Flo Rida featuring Sia. (Un)fortunately I’m really not up on the pop scene anymore. Although I’m feeling Sia, so maybe I’m still cool.
Ok, but that was a digression. We dance. It’s fun. We go up to a stage to stash our coats on it because, well, coat checking — who does that? And then something crazy happens. We’re walking back to a central location in a little train (as required when traversing crowds in a group) and some child pinches my ass.
Maybe you don’t think this is crazy.
But I’m extremely sheltered and found it traumatizing. Or maybe that’s not exactly the word. I was upset. I may have been angry. Do peeps know I’m a little bit into feminism? Well, I felt I should let this person know that pinching my ass was unacceptable, but it took me a about three seconds to get to that conclusion because I really was a little shocked.
As the anger materialized, I considered options, and turned, but found myself pulled along through the crowd so that I could hardly reach the kid, let alone grab his t-shirt and say something really smart in his face like they do in the movies. Let’s be honest, I have no idea what I would have said. I mean — I can fume, but I don’t know how to fight or anything and my defenses might be vaguely laughable in situations like these.
But I had to take action! So I reached back through the crowd and flicked the dude in the side of the face. Flicking is good, right? Solid decision?
I wasn’t sure I’d made good contact, though, so I tried to push through and really get him, but this is the moment when one of the wolf pack saw me looking pissed and reaching through the crowd kind of like a crazy person.
So he also took action, thinking, I’m sure, that I was about to pick a fight with teenagers, that I might be actually about to hit a teenager, and that he should stop me. Which is reasonable, but I was really mad because what I had done was absurdly funny and also because I tend to assume that everyone should know what I’m thinking and intending at all times — especially my friends — such that I was upset he didn’t read my mind and know that I was only flicking. We had to fight about it a little bit, but I can understand why friends should not let friends beat up pathetic ass-pinchers.
However, flicking is and should continue to be allowed. It’s like the international symbol for “you’re annoying.”