Day 143. Listing of Kind of Socially Acceptable Things

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Michelle and I had lunch with my friend, Catherine, who works for Community. She is the most encouraging lady out there. It was really nice to hear some encouragement. Plus, she has connections. 21 affirmation points.

Michelle and I went to a free screening of Friends with Benefits at the Grove. It’s really good, Justin Timberlake is funny, I like the part where he…just kidding, we didn’t get in. Get this, the cut off was after the two people in front of us. Eat it, JT.

While in line I adjusted my belt. It was too loose, so I had to tighten it. I feel weird about doing that in public. I guess there is nothing wrong with it, other than drawing attention to my crotch. I suppose it also resembles the reverse motion of taking my pants off. I would say it is in the gray area of social acceptability.

Here is my list of gray area socially acceptable things:

-Scratching the inside of your ear with your pinky. How is different from picking your nose? I remember my grandpa using a key. Is that better? I won’t be shaking his key when I say hello.

-Clipping your fingernails. I would say this one is clearly unacceptable, but I don’t feel that I’m necessarily in the majority, based on the  number of instances I see others do it. To me, it is the equivalent of shaving your legs, you’re consciously leaving parts of your body laying around.

-Mentioning that you went to the doctor, or had a procedure, but providing no other details. Clearly, the receiver of the information is not supposed to ask a follow up question, but the giver initiates the awkwardness. It’s like they’re saying, “I had to have a minor procedure done yesterday, things are up in the air, do not respond.”

-Saving a spot in line. We all do this one, but when we’re behind the spot savers, we’re still a little pissed off when the friend walks up.


-Saying something, or not saying something when the person you are with has food stuck in their teeth. The size of the piece of food when you will speak up is inversely proportionate to how well you know the person. A stranger could have a flank steak in there, I’m not saying anything. Michelle could have a piece of salt and I’m mentioning it. One time, when I had braces, I called a couple up after a meal to apologize about the giant piece of lettuce I found stuck on my braces afterwards.

-The mid conversation transition from listening to what the other is saying, to pretending to listen while sending a Facebook message on your phone. This is becoming more socially acceptable. Imagine the equivalent before cell phones. It’s the mid ’90s and you’re talking to your friend about Soundgarden. While you’re mentioning the bridge in Black Holed Sun, your friend grabs a passerby and starts talking. When you complain, your friend shoots, back, “What? I’m still listening to you!”

-Calling someone “brother” when you are not related, and are white. I like it when people call me brother, really, I do, it makes me feel like I’m part of a club. But, I also feel weird about it.

-Complimenting someone on how they smell. Be careful with this one. How well do you know them? Are you describing their smell as good, or luscious? Know the adjective boundaries.

-Telling someone they look tired. You had better be damn sure that they actually are tired before you bring it up.

-Telling someone they look like a celebrity. My personal rule on this one is that it is acceptable, but you have to phrase it, “You look like a better looking version of…” Do this, even if it is not true. If you don’t, the person will automatically think things to themselves like, “My nose isn’t that big, is it? Is it?!”



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