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Etiquette--as in the hallway, as in life

Thursday 2/17/22

Came back from working out today, ready to move on to the next part of the day, and the woman who cleans the hallways of the building was here. She's here a lot, for some reason, when there's very little to do. Anyway, she was coming down the stairs backwards near my apartment, vacuuming, doing what she normally does--listening to her music so that it's very loud--she plays it out loud--and singing along. It is highly invasive as I try to work. She has no regard or idea or any interest in the fact that someone could be in their home, or their home office, and not want to be hearing her. She also has these long conversations with people who come into the building. She's simple. That's not a cleaning person thing at all. But, most people are simple, and they'll talk to her for ten minutes about nothing. They don't have anywhere to be or anything to do, apparently, in the middle of the work day. Anyway, I simply took off my sneakers, and went inside quickly, closing the door behind me. If I lingered at all, she would have crashed into me with her ass. No clue about her surroundings. So, I try and make like Zorro, and pass without notice--the fox in the night! Well, the middle of the day. But you know what I mean.

Then I hear her start to curse me out about the door, like I had opened it from the inside to send some kind of volume-based, anti-cleaning person message by closing it, but speaking like she's part Care Bear. Again, very simple. No clue that anyone had been in the hall, and gone inside. "That wasn't nice. I was just doing my job." Going on and on. Her awful music is playing now. I hear it down a floor. No respect. And she's singing nice and loud again, drunken Karaoke-style. I did nothing wrong, of course, but that doesn't matter. Then I hear her talking to people coming in, about what someone upstairs did to her. Like the devil just personally had at her with his heated pitchfork. And I thought, this is the world now. People are simple, people are crazy. Do you think I want to go out into the hall, and terrify this creature by saying, "Do we have a problem here? Because I can hear you swearing about me. I came home from working out and you were, as per usual, oblivious, and I went into my apartment, which is my right and to be expected. And then I need to hear you cursing me in the hall?" What's she going to say? She's going to be frightened out of her mind. So I don't do anything. This music, the whole performance, it's pure ratchet. I try to write with this going on. Deal with what I have to deal with. If you work in someone's building, you should attempt to be as non-disruptive as possible. In today's world, I think thinking this way makes me the bad guy.

Anyway. This is stupid. I can't believe I'm even writing about this. I think it's the bigger issue--how people are now. What that makes the world. And then if a dumb, simple person--which is most people--says something to someone else, that other dumb, simple person believes it. Just reading what you read about some bored, rich, suburban housewife with nothing in her life, and she goes shopping at the Target, then jumps on the Wellesley town Facebook page to say that she saw a suspicious man eyeing her suspiciously, and she saw him in one aisle, then another, and another! Because, of course, he wanted to sex traffic her baby. Then all of these other women believe this, and write, "I'm sorry sorry that happened to you"--words no one should ever say to anyone because they're insincere by definition at this point--and then they chime in with their stories and "facts" about how they knew someone who knew someone in Greenwich, CT and sex traffic rings are big there. People are so stupid they just believe it. And it's just some random dude at Target who bought Cheez-Its for his kids and a sprinkler for his lawn. Or look at the people on Twitter who think that they're not only the leading medical authority in the world--and it will be some unwashed looking chubby dude who uses his teeth to lance a blister on his finger and has no clue what floss is for save that it looks like a green noodle--but also a detective that would put Sherlock Holmes to shame.

And these people--which, again, is most people--want to be believed and enabled. They want traction with their voice. They want their voice to be accepted as legit. They never want to be corrected or exposed for what they are, and that is someone with no clue about anything. That's what people want more than anything: the unchallenged lie of their persona. And that lie can be challenged simply by what someone else is and what they know that person to be. It's that person who becomes the outcast of society, who has the much harder road than these idiots, which is one hell of an irony. But they want the lie more than they want health, happiness, love, purpose, meaning, connection. It's not even close for them. This is the number one thing in the world. So who is that person going to hate? Exactly.

So that's why something like this stupid incident resonates wth me, because in its microcosmic fashion it speaks to larger ideas and things to overcome. And of course some simple-minded building boob is now going to think I'm Dracula living on the third floor. And it will be someone like the women across the hall who stumble in drunkenly every weekend night at half past two, loud as they want, with a couple of meatheads with them, doing their meathead laughs and meathead courtship banter in the hall--which is a treat to listen to, and you have no choice but to listen to it, because it's so loud--and then doing it inside, too, for another couple hours, so that I can't sleep and have to go to the desk and work, and then get up at five anyway, when they're going to sleep past noon. But not loving that is being "judge-y" and "not chill." And it's more like, grow the fuck up, you fuck wads. But if you're trash, it's like hooray, we're all trash here, and everyone likes you because you enable them. Trash loves to enable trash because then trash gets enabled back.

Like I said, this is stupid. Back to work.


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