askally

The “Helping Hands” Edition

In Uncategorized on January 17, 2009 at 9:35 pm

Okay, so this question wasn’t technically “submitted” according to the usual recognised processes, but I will use it here anyway because I think it bears merit in my present situation.

Dear Ally,

Why do people seem to think it appropriate to point and laugh, rather than help? I mean, where are the “Good Samaritans” I read about in the newspaper? Why is everyone such an asshole?

Susan, Edinburgh

* * *

Dear Susan,

Okay, I know that this question came up in a conversation, but shhhhhh, we won’t tell anyone that, will we?

Oh, wow. I started this post waaaaay back at the beginning of September, when I was still filled with hot rage at the cruelty of the masses. Unfortunately, I have spent the subsequent months in such a state of relaxation and bliss that I can hardly imagine channeling all of that blind hatred-for-every-living-creature again in order to compose an angry masterpiece for your general amusement.

Wait a minute… right. I’ve just been made aware that the last four months have been crap – truly “sucked the balls” as they (I) say, so I should be good. Where were we? Right, the assholery of jackasses:

Dear Susan,

I would first like to emphasize the fact that I myself have no point of reference to the phenomenon to which you refer. I mean, “Point-and-laugh”? “Assholes”? That latter is certainly I word I have scarce had reason to use in my many years upon this earth. I may or may not have had to look it up in a dictionary. Not because I wasn’t smart enough to derive its intented meaning from the context in which it was placed, you see; it was more because I wanted to be absolutely sure of all connotations and associative meanings that might arise so that I could take full advantage of any potential pun-like situations.

Apparently an “ass-hole” refers to an unpleasant, nasty person; it may also refer to the often smelly external sphincter (or “hole”) of a persons bottom (or “ass”, if you’d rather). I think I am safe in ass-suming that you referred to the former definition (see what I did there, with the hyphen? All of that extra work paid off, eh?)

Now that we’ve gotten the semantics out of the way, we can move on. In order to properly address your question, I was forced to conduct some research. Having never been the subject of this cruelty to which you refer, I had to perform some social experiments to become acquainted with the experience. And so, I decided (in my brilliance) that while moving house – rather than simply snapping my fingers and having several large, bare-chested, and rippling men appear to do the task for me – I would take it upon myself to carry every item I own from the old flat to the new.
And I decided that I would do it in the single most painful, humiliating, and inefficient way possible: walk to the bus stop, take bus to the train station, take the train to the new city, walk three blocks, and climb four flights of stairs… five if you include the set leading up and out of the train station.

Of course, because apparently I have more stuff than my great-aunt Mildred before we took her credit cards away, I had to do this several times over, each time carrying 3 bags filled with approximately 30-45lbs of stuff (per bag). I did this, I believe, four times in total.

My experiences included the following interactions with my fellow travellers:

1) A kind-looking lady who commented (uselessly) on how heavy my bags looked

2) Two drunk, middle-aged men who laughed at my weary, burdened self, made snarky comments as to the amount of stuff I was carrying, tried to trip me as I made my way up the aisle at the command of the train attendant, and then proceeded to walk past me several times on their way to and from the toilet, laughing and teasing me each time as, buried under three rather bulky and heavy bags, I looked helplessly on.

3) A very kind German (or Eastern-European accented) man, who walked up the stairs ahead of me with his bike, then actually came back and offered to help me lug my bags up the stairs at the train station (wow shock horror!)

4) Two very awesome future flatmates who helped me carry my bags up the other four flights of stairs should they happen to be home (which was, I believe, 3 of the 4 trips).

5) A hell of a lot of stares, snickers, and even glares as I held up traffic going up and down stairs at the train stations, and getting on and off of the bus/train.

This is my conclusion, Susan:

People you know will be nice to you, because they fear your retaliation if they are not. Other people will be “assholes” because they have no reason to rear such retaliation (so they think) and have not been raised well, probably because their parents were dirty hippies or no-good beatniks who just did a lot of drugs and ruined society.

German people are nice, but only if they have bicycles. The rest are also likely to be assholes, because they are not environmentally conscious enough to buy a bike. I am ignoring the fact that the bicyclist was carrying his bike on the train because I like to pretend that such glitches in my logic don’t exist.

Solution: kill all no-good commie beatniks, and make the hippies take a damn shower and raise their kids better. Then people will know the value of a good, strong, love-thy-neighbour, do-unto-others, Christian upbringing (and liberal applications of the back of my hand) and be all the better for it.

Yeah, that’s right. I just solved the problem of global assholery.

You’re welcome, WORLD.

… Also Susan.

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  1. you make me laugh! miss you!

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