I’m a big campaigner for personal space.  In fact, I think everyone needs at least a 5 foot circle around them that no one else is allowed enter without permission.  I don’t know if I’ve always been that way or if I’ve gotten grouchy in my old age.  What I do know is that I really would prefer that you take a step or two (or ten) back when you are speaking to me.  If I can smell what you had for lunch, you’re too close.

It’s ironic, because I’m a toucher.  If I am talking to you, chances are, I’m gonna touch your shoulder, pat your arm or touch your back.  I can’t help it.  I have a friend who suffers from a disease that causes pain when she is touched.  Do you know how many times I have patted that poor girl on the shoulder?  It’s awful.  I always apologize, and she says it’s no big deal.  In her head, she’s probably thinking not-so-nice things.

Welcome back from the tangent.  As I was saying, personal space, people, personal space!  I am amazed by how many times people invade my personal space!  I don’t mind it so much if I know you.  Really, I don’t, so those of you who know me, don’t think you have to stand across the parking lot and yell to me instead of approaching me.  But for people I don’t know, back away slowly, and no one will get hurt.

I was in line in a store the other day, and there was this man behind me who kept getting closer and closer and closer.  I would take a step forward, and he would take two.  I could feel his breath on my neck.  Honestly.  I turned and looked at him, and he was totally oblivious to the fact that I was there.  He wasn’t flirting or trying to intimidate me.  He just honestly had no boundaries when it came to space.  The fact that he was speaking another language loudly in my ear did not help the situation either.  I kept having to remind myself that I was a grown up and I shouldn’t turn around and wallop him.  I came close, but I controlled myself.

Legend has it that I went crazy once at the Magic Kingdom.  I know that is hard for you to believe because I’m normally so calm and subdued, but it’s true.  My sister and Mr. Everything witnessed said-event and said it was pretty funny.  I remember it somewhat, but there is a moment in the story where everything goes black (or actually it is more of a reddish color)….

My sister was going through some really rough stuff in her life, and we had invited her to go to Disney with us to take her mind off things.  I was really worried about her because she wasn’t eating and she wasn’t doing well.  She was prone to panic attacks at the time, so you would’ve thought she would go psycho, but she left it up to me.  The park was crowded that day, and it was time for the parade.  People were lining the walkways, and the employees had the main street roped off.  It was hard to get through the crowd.  We didn’t want to see the parade.  We just wanted to get somewhere quiet.  My sister was starting to panic, and Mr. Everything was trying to move us through the droves of people and into a clearing where we could breathe.  Apparently, that’s when the incident took place.

As we were trying to politely excuse ourselves through the crowd, we fell into a bottle-neck situation.  There were people all around us, and I had no personal space.  I looked at my sister, and she was on the edge, which put me on the edge.  Then, it happened.  A woman beside me had long hair.  It was not long, well brushed, clean looking hair (not that it would have really mattered, because hair freaks me out whether it looks clean or not).  This woman had long, nasty blackish-greyish scraggly hair, and…..It.  Touched.  My.  Arm.  (!!!)  All at once, I shoved Mr. E out of the way.  Then, that’s where it all gets foggy for me.  Apparently, I shoved EVERYONE out of the way.  I pushed us through the crowd, yelling, “Move! Move! Get out of the way!”  By the time we got through the crowd, I was dripping sweat, and I was bright red and panting.  Mr. Everything and my sister were laughing hysterically to the point of being doubled over because I had just offended about 1/3 of the guests at Disney that day.  I was so rude, and I literally was shoving people.  All because of The Hair.

I’m a good southern girl, and good southern girls don’t act that way.  They are nice to everyone, because they wouldn’t want to offend anyone.  (The clinical term is “People Pleaser.”)  I’m tellin’ you, this people pleaser came unglued and became a people shover because my personal space was violated.  So, I’m warning you, world.  You need to step on back and give me my space.  And, whatever you do, don’t touch me with your hair!                                 -Al



12/07/2012 4:15pm

This post might not be funny to people who don't know you. But this tickled my funny bone just thinking of you acting that way. It is so unlike how I see you acting on a normal basis. Be aware that your "friends" now know how to really get your goat - invade your personal space and rub their head/hair on your cheek as they hug you.

12/07/2012 9:25pm

Oh great. I did not even think about that. Wonderful. Combine that with the knowledge that I am terrified of snakes, and y'all hold all the power!

Wendy - the aforementioned sister.....
12/08/2012 12:04am

Oh, the memories of the happiest place on Earth! You recall that was the phrase of the day, right?

12/08/2012 1:48pm

Oh I can't wait until tomorrow.. really all kidding aside reading this I heard your voice and I must admit it made me laugh also. This is so not the you I know and love especially after our "guilt" talk

04/25/2017 2:17pm

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