Sometimes you cannot win

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Deepdale, Mar 24, 2006.

  1. Deepdale macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    New York
    #1
    Yesterday as I waited on an elevated platform for my Manhattan-bound train, a woman in her 30s walked by and I noticed that there was an obvious outline of what may have been something like Johnson's baby powder that was showing on her backside through jet black pants.

    Knowing how people can be unpredictable, I thought about whether I should mention this to her. I waited for another woman to arrive so that this could be brought up to her by someone of the same gender, but that did not happen. She was nicely dressed and I figured she would appreciate the ability to use her hand or tissues to swipe or pat down the area, and avoid this residue being seen by others once the train arrived.

    I walked over to where she stood and said, "Please excuse me, I do not want to be thought of in the wrong way, but I want to let you know that there is an outline of white powder appearing on the back of your pants that needs to be brushed away."

    She glared at me as if I insisted on the exclusive right to do the brushing and replied as follows: "Don't you have anything else to look at this early in the morning?"

    I could not let that go unanswered and said, "If you are even suggesting that I am here at this hour to check out women's rear ends, you have problems far greater than what is currently on your pants. You are perfectly free to do as you please ... sorry to have mentioned it at all."

    Then I moved away and about two minutes later from a farther distance noticed her doing exactly what needed to be done to rid herself of just about all remnants of the powder. Next time I may keep things to myself even if I notice anything similar on another person. Figuring out people can be a near mission impossible at times.
     
  2. UKnjb macrumors 6502a

    UKnjb

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    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #2
    You have all my sympathies - seems it is yet another example of how true that saying (of Gore Vidal?) is 'A good turn never goes unpunished'.

    It is a wacky world indeed where so many examples of consideration to others is misconstrued as potential threat/harm or whatever. maybe she will reflect on her response, decide that it was inappropriate and you will have, in some small way, helped push the balance to the better.

    FWIW, and maybe this thread will turn into shared experiences, I was sitting in a crowded Underground train, reading a book. I looked up and noticed that nun was standing near me, there being no spare seats. So I got up and gave her my seat. Instead of saying "Thank you", I got a tirade of invective from her about how I hadn't got up earlier, there were no manners left in the world and blah, blah, blah.

    I hope your experience hasn't soured your day.
     
  3. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Gone but not forgotten.
    #3
    Hey, if you were in Brooklyn, I'm surprised that she didn't take a swing at you. :D

    I've noticed shirt tags sticking out and I mention it and I've gotten a nasty look or two and I just say "Real friends tell you when you don't look quite right." and they usually smile and say something like "I guess that's been sticking up all day and you're the first person to tell me. Thanks."
     
  4. Deepdale thread starter macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

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    May 4, 2005
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    New York
    #4
    The annoyance from that interaction lingered for 1-2 hours once I got to my office, but all is well now. That is quite a story you have about the nun. It brought back memories from when I attended a catholic elementary school and saw nuns regularly reach for their trusty ruler and rap students across the knuckles with it.
     
  5. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    Randy's House
  6. njmac macrumors 68000

    njmac

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    Jan 6, 2004
    #6
    That was incredibly rude of her. Not that its a great excuse but maybe she was embarrassed?

    You could have called the police and really made her day :p Anthrax scare anyone? ;)
     
  7. zelmo macrumors 603

    zelmo

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    #7
    So, did she have a nice butt or what?:eek: :D
    ...and do you imagine her SO was snorting coke off her ass before she left for work, or was that really just baby powder?]
     
  8. Deepdale thread starter macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    New York
    #8
    I knew that burning question would come up. Simple answer ... yes, yes, yes! It was an early morning delight (powder or no powder). When men are asked whether they are boob, leg or ass men, my personal bottom line puts me into the latter category.

    As to whether or not it was really baby powder, I can only give the benefit of the doubt and assume something innocent. :)
     
  9. jadekitty24 macrumors 65816

    jadekitty24

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2005
    Location:
    The poor section of Connecticut
    #9
    First off, let me say I really admire your attitude. There are 2 kinds of people in life. Those that may see a friend with a nasty booger hanging out of their nose - this type of person would snicker about it behind said person's back. This type of person would let their "friend" walk around all day like that. Not very nice, and certainly not a real friend. Then you have those of us who aren't afraid of any negative reprecussions, who wouldn't hesitate to tell our friend that they have any extremely large booger hanging out, and it would be best to eradicate it. I really appreciate the fact that you would do this type of thing for a perfect stranger. You saved her from embarassing herself. I have found that people automatically take things the wrong way, it's hard not to in such an unpredicatable world. I'm almost 100% positive that she felt bad, but didn't have the balls to apologize for her rudeness. When you point something like this out to a person, it puts them off a bit. First of all, they are walking around unknowingly looking like a fool, and you pointed that out. Some people don't take it for what it is, a bit of friendly advice, but instead they assume that you are pointing this out just to feel superior to them, or to insult them. I get this all the time. Just know you did a good deed, whether or not she acknowledges it. And you got a look at a nice bottom, so all in all not too bad ;)
    PS-Yes, I am getting ridiculous with these "paragraphs"!
     
  10. Deepdale thread starter macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

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    May 4, 2005
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    New York
    #10
    Thanks, your post was on point. Aside from her uncalled for reply, there were definitely some perks at the tail end of this story.
     
  11. gekko513 macrumors 603

    gekko513

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    Oct 16, 2003
    #11
    It's very common for someone to get defensive when a stranger enters his/her personal sphere suddenly like that. I'm sure her initial reaction was more like an act of self defence and that when she got over her initial embarassment she regretted her hostile comment.
     
  12. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #12
    You should have said: Hey toots, you sat in some coke.
     
  13. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    Washington, DC
    #13
    Sounds like she may have had something of a point... :)
     
  14. Deepdale thread starter macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

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    New York
    #14
    From her perspective she did. This is a woman who has probably endured more than her share of lewd comments directed at her overall appearance. When that occurs, women are far more apt to be defensive in reacting to a situation like the one I described.

    The pitfall of such behavior is that she is guilty of doing what many do when judging sincerity of comments that involve a part of the anatomy which, in her daily travels, draws unwelcome attention, and that is painting with too wide a brush and thus being perceived negatively.
     
  15. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    sitting on your shoulder
  16. SamIchi macrumors 68030

    SamIchi

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  17. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #17
    Haha, I was thinking something similar: "Hey baby, you sat in some coke. Want me to snort it off your bottom for you?"
     
  18. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, England
    #18
    precisely the words that entered my mind as well.


    i would have thanked the person who alerted me to such a thing. there's just no pleasing some people. :rolleyes:

    and i'll just "ditto" what jadekitty said too. (thanks for saving me the typing) :p :)
     
  19. mjstew33 macrumors 601

    mjstew33

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    May 29, 2005
    Location:
    Illinois
    #19
    ditto.
     
  20. fanbrain macrumors 6502

    fanbrain

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    Location:
    So. UT
    #20

    HAHAHAAHA. That's funny. I almost spit on my screen.
     
  21. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

    Joined:
    May 1, 2005
    #21
    I disagree... you (none of us, really) know her story.

    I have personally been sexually (verbally and a tiny bit physically) harrassed on BART... 10AM, busy workday, full car of passengers. It was bad. I filed a police report as soon as I got off. Nobody helped me on the train. I had eye contact with a man for a second and he nervously looked away.

    Unless you have experienced such negativity from fellow humans, you probably wouldn't understand the way it feels to be approached at times by strangers.
     
  22. emaja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 3, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #22
    I am not a woman, so I cannot know what it is like to be leered at and have inapproriate things said to like a lot of women have to endure, but with his preface of...

    there is no reason to think he was being creepy. She just overreacted and stomped on someone trying to be nice.
     
  23. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

    Joined:
    May 1, 2005
    #23
    I agree. I think she overreacted to his words... but I think calling her names is an overreaction to her overreaction and uncalled for.

    We really don't know what kind of day she was having. For all we know, she could have been sexually harrassed the day before, the week before... heck any time at all. She could have just found out that her work is laying people off. She could have just found out that her significant other was cheating on her w/ someone they randomly met. Etc.
     
  24. emaja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 3, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #24
    Agreed. I was referring more to the original post than to others who chimed in with the names.

    Deepdale's response to her...

    was mature and completely appropriate. He also did the right thing and left it alone at that. I am not sure that all of us - including myself - would have shown that kind of restraint.
     
  25. Deepdale thread starter macrumors 68000

    Deepdale

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    New York
    #25
    Thank you. I show respect for women and, as far as the incident on the platform goes, I did assume there may have been underlying reasons for the response she directed at me. I still believe it is always smart to avoid lumping all men together even if she has been verbally or physically harassed in the past.

    I have no regrets about how I handled it that morning. By responding and then walking away a safe distance, hopefully that made her realize there was no desire to inflame anything nor make her feel her personal space was being invaded by someone who would then have fit the description of other crude jerks she encountered in her past.
     

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