Sunday, December 07, 2008

How selfish can some people be?

How many tables and chairs does one person need at the bookstore café? Anywhere?

Does one person honestly need TWO tables and THREE chairs?

I’m really really really really PISSED right now. I’m at my home away from home, Borders, and all the tables and chairs near the electricity are taken. Three DOUBLE tables (two tables pushed together) are occupied by single occupants. Two of them are hogging three chairs each. I asked one if I could use one of the tables so I could be near the power outlet and the woman said “No, I have too much stuff.”

She had one computer, a sheath of paper, a cup of coffee and a bottle of water. She gave her unused sweater it’s own chair. She’s also sitting by the window ledge and using that for her purse.

I’m here with my older daughter who is probably sitting on the floor in the manga section as she can’t sit with me. I stole one wooden chair and squeezed into the corner and I’m trying to balance my computer on my lap. It’s not easy or fun and my back is achy from this awkward position.

When I sit where that person is sitting and the joint is full, I squeeze my stuff together as long as there’s only one or two in my group, and I offer to let someone else have the second table.

What’s wrong with so many people today? I don’t care if this selfish person reads this post. I doubt she knows my name anyway, but even if she does. Why do some people feel they’re privileged to take more than enough space for them when others have nothing or insufficient resources?

She must be one of those people who thinks the world owes her, or that has a silver spoon in her mouth and thinks she’s deserving of more than her share.

That same woman who refused to share her table won’t even use the other plug so I can use a halfway comfortable chair near that plug. Her computer cord could go either way. Mine won’t stretch three tables down. I was here before her and we were both awaiting the next free table by power. But she got there first and still wouldn’t share. That’s also why I’m so PISSED!

It’s not Borders’ fault…or is it? At least partially? Should the cafe allow people to take up so much space while others are waiting or even get turned away? I’d think they lose business when this happens. They’re about to lose mine. I’m about to tell my daughter not to do her Christmas shopping here today (she’s already picked out a gift to purchase), that I’ll take her to the competition and I’ll pay the difference if it’s more expensive, just to make a point.

This reminds me of a post a couple months ago by one of my writing/blogging buddies. They went to Panera Bread and someone there hogged the only table with a power outlet, didn’t need the outlet obviously because they had nothing hooked into it, and there were plenty of other vacant tables that would have worked for them just as well. They supposedly even smirked at the person needing that power outlet as if they, too, knew they were being selfish and even enjoyed being selfish. At least that’s what I understood the post to say.

Are some people just so oblivious? Or are they truly selfish? Maybe they’re downright evil. I vote for the third. S

It’s almost impossible to write or even edit on this dinky, hard little chair. And unfortunately, I have a ton to edit and write. I’d hoped to stay all evening, till closing.

I don’t mind waiting my turn and being fair. But when someone jumps in front of me, and then it seems others keep jumping in front of me, I feel like giving up…everything. What’s the point of getting out of bed or trying to do anything or go anywhere when so many people just don’t give a damn about anyone else? I don’t want to push and shove for my rights – just be assertive – which I did by asking her to share (so I think). I didn’t go off on my rant out loud in the store as I didn’t want to embarrass myself or my daughter and then never be able to show my face here again – that’s if I ever calm down, if I even want to come back after this.

Am I the only one this ever happens to? If not, am I the only one to feel this way? I’ve been trying to live and let live and not take myself so seriously, but obviously, I’m not doing it well today. I had big plans to get a lot of work done today and now it looks like the day will be a big dud. I don’t think my back can take much more and no one looks like they’ll be moving soon. I was trying to wait them out.


Merry Christmas to me, joy, peace on earth, and all that good shit!!!

A few hours later, still at Borders:

I’ve run into a couple nice people as well as the the woman who so infuriated me, so the day’s going a bit better. The lady beside me moved her coffee so I could put my computer on the mini table so I could type better. We started talking and we exchanged email addresses. I’m going to see if I can hook her up with a lady who sets up critique groups. When I get home I’ll email her with all three critique group sources I know.

A little while later, I gave another gentleman the seat my daughter had vacated as it seemed she’d deserted me. He was very nice and offered to give it back to her should she decide to return. He even flirted a bit. :)

But then another man jumped in front of me to get one of the good tables again. And now instead of even working, he’s turned around talking (LOUDLY) to the man behind him, two chairs over from me. Although I have my earplugs pushed into my ears as far as they will go, I could still hear their conversation which made it difficult to work.

Unfortunately, neither my MP3 player is working nor my CD player (the one in my laptop). My son erased my music off my computer when it died about a month ago, so I have none of my music to drown them out as I usually would. I think the universe is against me today. Anyway, I finally found a few of my daughter’s songs – not my music, but some Japanese songs,which is far better than being forced to listen to other people talking at the top of their lungs. Okay, so I should go to the library if I want complete silence. Unfortunately, the library closes at 5 pm on weekends so it’s not a choice in the evening.

When I get home, I promise I’m going to iTunes or somewhere similar and buy some David Cook, Chris Daughtry and a few of my other favorite songs for emergencies like this. Or, better yet, if the hubby will cooperate, I’ll see if he can upload my CDs to his computer and then we can hopefully somehow transfer them to mine. I don’t know how but the older daughter thinks she does. Somehow, I’m going to get some decent writing music on my lap top so I can work! See how nuts I get when people get in my way of working???

Maybe I’ll make myself get up with the rooster tomorrow so I can be first into Borders so I can be the first to get a table. But then, I don't do mornings. Maybe I'll make an exception...

Hallejulah! After almost FIVE HOURS of waiting my turn, I finally got a table near an electric outlet. FIVE FRICKING HOURS!!! (And yes, the same two people are still hogging TWO tables each to themselves. Unbelievable!)

Finally, I hope to get into deeper work. I’ve done some but it wasn’t too easy in the former position.

I guess I shouldn't complain. I wrote this on Black Friday even though I didn't post this till today as I had other posts pre-scheduled. At least 3 people died on Black Friday and others were injured because people were being selfish. What I experienced was nothing compared to that. Maybe Black Friday makes everybody act like animals. I'm beginning to think so.


Molly Daniels said...

That boggles the mind. I think selfishness is at an all-time high this year.

barbara huffert said...

You know, that's one thing I like about Europeans better. They never hesitate to share tables with anyone. It's expected. Perhaps we should take a lesson from them.

DJ Kirkby said...

one would be allowed to hog a table here, it just doesn't happen.

Unknown said...

Things that are worse than not having access to a table and electricity at a book store...poverty, hunger, child molestation, war, mental depression, hate crimes, no electricity, clean water...

Regina Carlysle said...

This is so inconsiderate! Whatever happened to good manners?

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