Monday, June 21, 2010

Oh C'mon




So sometime last year I wrote a quick post about a woman that was looking for a specific wine glass. She was a housekeeper and had broken one of her employers Riedel glasses and came in to replace it. The problem was she had no idea which line and even worse, which style of glass it was that she had demolished while trying to clean. We went round and round and then she popped on the phone to try and get more information from her boss. I heard her over in the glassware area talking and started to get nervous when she started with the, “Okay. Okay. Hold on” and started walking up to me.

So I have a little, “thing” about talking on a stranger’s cell phone. Just kind of grosses me out, the oily skin residue, the makeup, the dried stranger spittle and hours of breath…ewe. I try to avoid it as much as possible, doing the talk-you-through-it dance trying to keep the phone owner in between me and that spittle coated, face oil contraption, and this almost always works….well either it works or they can sense the “Oh God don’t make me do it” vibe that I am tossing off along the with little bits of terror sweat. It’s just one of my many quirky behaviors….there are many I assure you.

So as much as I tried to avoid and deflect this woman was just hell bent on getting me on her cell phone to talk to her boss. I wanted to help her so I just had to suck it up and flinch as I pictured the layer of ewe that was about to touch my face. Yeah so I damn near lost my shit when she pulls a piece…..out of her ear and plops it in my palm. Call me a freak but asking me to shove a piece of anything that just came out of any of your orifices into my own….well that’s just kind of a lot to ask of anyone let alone a perfect stranger working in a wine shop.



I had thought that was one of the most awkward personal space issues I had been involved in for a while at the shop. Sure I have the folks that finally work up the nerve to touch me, (I don’t throw off a terribly warm, come cuddle me kind of vibe) and it seems that once they jump that hurdle they can’t stop….petting me, (shudder). I’m just not built that way and when these, (and there are only a couple of them) people start rubbing me I flash on Of Mice and Men and fear one of them is going to have a Lenny moment. I tolerate it, never want to make anyone feel uncomfortable but it is a bit of an issue for me when I see someone’s paw slowly moving towards me, feel my shoulders get a little stiff as I feel their unwelcomed meat mittens rubbing my back and arms….like I said, I’m just not a snuggly person so strangers rubbing me, I assume in an effort to comfort me….well it has the total opposite effect.

For the most part I have been very lucky in that there have been very few people that have asked me to do something that was, in my opinion, a little out of the scope of what I am willing to do for my job. Oh they say and suggest plenty of shit that causes me to step back but on the whole talking front, well I can kind of hold my own there. No problem what so ever shooting down the, “You guys should use the Hooters business model” and the, “Sam if you guys set up a free kiss with each bottle purchased, I would buy a case a week”….gotta love buzzy dudes, but what happened yesterday, well that one might just take the cake.




“Smell my finger” I stood there my neck elongated, head jerking backwards, eyes wide and fighting the mass of eyebrow that was scrunching down upon them, looking at this woman standing in my French department with her arm extended…two fingers being offered for me to take a sniff of. Now even with the people I love this might be a bit much to ask, I would likely do it but, “Smell my finger” from a stranger?! C’mon dude. I must have looked like someone just gave me a Brazilian because this woman’s husband appeared like Superman just as she started to bring her fingers to my “is this really happening?” face. “Honey don’t make her smell your fingers!” he said sharply but with a bit of a chuckle in his tone, he’s lucky I am not a touchy person because I may have had my very own Lenny moment trying to express my gratitude.

The woman wanted me to pick a wine to go with the marinade she had just made, the marinade that was clearly still on her hands and she thought it would help me to smell it rather than just hear what was in it. Not a bad idea I guess but there are just certain things you simply cannot expect people to do and….smell my finger is pretty high on that list. I picked a beautiful little Cotes du Rhone to go with the assembled in my head and not sniffed from her fingers marinade and went back to helping others on the floor. A few minutes later I could see the finger lady and her husband standing at the register ready to check out.



I rounded the corner of the counter and was met with a very red-faced woman. “I’m sorry I asked you to sniff my finger” she said with a nervous giggle. Turns out this woman was born in another country and whatever civil place that might be seemed to miss out on the smell-my-finger playground antics. She and her hubby were in full fits of giggles as I rang up and bagged their wines which in turn had me in giggles too. “Sorry again” she shouted as she headed for the door, “Oh don’t worry about it, least you gave me the best story of the day”.

28 comments:

Charlie Olken said...

I can relate to this situation very directly. It is a far too reminiscent of "Smell my Pastis".

Samantha Dugan said...

Awe Charlie, I thought you loved me enough to "Smell my Pastis".....(sniff) I see now that this is not the case. I'll just be over here licking my wounds....

webb said...

THAT was so far over the line that, well, that I can't think what to even say. You handled it better than I would have (and I AM a hugger!)

Benito said...

I'm not a germaphobe, but that's just repulsive. Sort of like when someone thrusts a filthy baby or incontinent chihuahua in your arms while you're trying to fix dinner.

Once in a blue moon, I encounter random ancient Eastern European women who want to scratch my red beard for good luck. It always creeps me the hell out, but it's hard to say no to someone who is 105 years old and only four feet tall. I don't know if it wards off some gypsy curse, or if that type of woman is just insatiably attracted to me.

Samantha Dugan said...

webb,
Not sure I handled it all that well, I could feel my face all scrunched up and everything but...really, that was just unreal.

Benito,
Long time no see! Welcome back kid and I promise that I shall not rub your beard when I see you next month.

Benito said...

Don't worry, I read everything you write. I go through phases of... "comment block" where I don't have anything significant to say. :)

Thomas said...

Benito,

You are the first person whose ever confirmed what used to happen to me years ago (when my beard was red and my travels were many).

I would mention this to friends and they would scoff that I was full of crap, but rub my beard those old people wanted to do. Now that i am approaching their age, I can understand it a little--I've wanted to rub a lot ladies beards...oops!

Anyway, it is gross to ask someone you don't know to smell your finger. In a situation like that, I'm always glad I was raised on the hard streets, where a quick retort was essential and has been a habit all my life. That's what you need, Sam: quick retorts, or small retarts to throw in their face.

Thomas said...

Geezus. I can't write today. Made an error over at Hosemaster's, too.

It bugs a writer to be so stupid about writing.

Who's not whose!

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

Ewww. Just reading that made me shudder. I'm not a hugger either, I hate people touching me. I've always said, if you haven't seen me naked, you don't know me well enough to touch me.

Well handled.

AnotherDayofCrazy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Samantha Dugan said...

Thomas,
Yeah but you see it is not my store and I don't think Randy would too pleased if I went of retorting or retarting at his customers. Nope gotta just grin and make the best of it....was pretty gross though. She was very sweet and very embarrassed once she thought it over...

AnotherDayofCrazy,
I think you might have a stutter there girlie and I am not sure who valochi is. The touching thing is weird for me too, I even cut and dye my own hair to avoid having to deal with that nonsense. That being said I would rather have hundreds of hands on me....and making me sniff their fingers than have anyone see me naked!

John M. Kelly said...

I'm with you on the "eeew" factor, but a part of me thinks it would be kind of cool to live in a culture where "sniff my finger" was considered an appropriate way to ask for a wine recommendation.

Thomas said...

John,

It's a slippery slope--first it's sniff my finger; then, it's sniff my armpit; then, shudder, shudder to think.

John M. Kelly said...

Thomas I've made a wine or two in my day that I thought might go great with armpit. But I've never come across a wine that I thought went with shudder - though some that made me shudder. Some in a good way. Some in a not so good way.

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

Commenting in the airport, while flying home from meetings... connection froze, then it doubled.

The first time I met one of my clients, a rural county government official in Yee-Haw-ville, she hugged me. Granted, she's known my boss for 20 years, and hugged him too, which is prob why she thought *I* was fair game, but um, no. I don't know if it's the vibes or the look of terror/repulsion, but in any case, hasn't happened since. Tho she still hugs my boss. Weird.

Ron Washam said...

My Gorgeous Samantha,

You should have recommended a wine from the Finger Lakes. And at least she didn't ask you to taste it.

And, hell, there goes my move when I meet you.

I love you!

Your HoseMaster

Samantha Dugan said...

John,
I think I am with Thomas on this one...pretty soon every wine shop in the nation will look like the Blogger's Conference, bunch of crotch sniffing. I'm gonna have to say veto the finger recommendations.

Thomas,
See there kid I am agreeing with you again.

AnotherDayofCrazy,
Understandable and might I add a bit flattering that you were checking in between flights. Had the same thing happen to me, the once hugged and now not so much thing. Must be some kind of "not so much melting with the cuddles" feeling they get when they touch us....like porcupine prickers. Alike, very much alike you and I so it seems....

Samantha Dugan said...

Mr. HoseMaster Sir,
That was to be your big move?! Smell my finger?! I am stunned. I so would have thought you were one of those stealth kinda guys...you know the ones that start out all sweet then begin with the slow but deeply felt rubbing of my legs, the gentle squeezing, the heat of your palm making my thighs shake...the smell of wine on your breath slipping inside me, the sweetest, richest wine I had ever smelled intoxicating me...each red wine whisper making my body looser, my clothing looser...

Smell my finger? Dang it, I had you all wrong. Ah well my beloved friend, I love you still.

Sara Louise said...

No way would I put a stranger's ear piece in my ear! GRODEY!

You handled that whole smell my finger thing well, I think I would have pissed myself with laughter if someone asked me to do that... and then ran far far away

Samantha Dugan said...

Sara,
The ear thing was just vile. The best part was watching this woman look at me like I was the freak when I was holding her earwax coated ear bud way away from my own ear while trying to make out what her boss was looking for. I'm the weird one?! Who the hell does that?

The "Sniff my finger" thing, (damn I snicker each time I type that) was just so out there that it almost seemed like a set up...I was thinking, "This cannot really be happening" but alas, twas.

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

Alike? So it seems, lol... funny enough, I'm a Sam too. Or Samantha to my parents. They never took to the nickname.

Samantha Dugan said...

AnotherDayofCrazy,
Get-the-fuck-oudda-heah! That's kinda freaky. Hmmm, wonder what else we have in common? Do you have an almost unnatural love of all things pickle? Do you gag when you brush your teeth? Do you want to punch people in the face when they call you Sammy?

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

Holy crap, I just bust out laughing so hard the guys two doors down probably heard me. Yes to pickles, no to teeth, and HELL yes on Sammy! (Though I named my dog that when I was a kid. Actually I named all the stray dogs I brought home with me as a kid that. My dad finally realized he better let me keep one, or he'd have to keep driving up Mt Baldy to "take them to a nice farm".)

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

I always just want to say " do I LOOK like a bouncy blonde that's all cuddly and ditzy and has a name that ends in an "ee" sound????"

No offense on the blonde thing. :)

Samantha Dugan said...

That's correct Sammy is a dogs name therefore mildly insulting. Plus I think adding those "Y's" to an adults name is just stoopid...not cute, just stoopid.

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

exactly~

Samantha Dugan said...

And now we are commenting at the same time! Anyone else hear Twilight Zone music?! No offense taken on the blonde thing...big boobs, green eyes and blonde hair, got them but at least I look scary so I never get that "bouncy ditz" thing thrown at me.....

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

I think it might be the "I'm NOT cuddly vibe" as opposed to the looks! Based on the male comments above anyway.

My comment verification is "icking" (ick-ing) which is perfect for this post! Sniff my finger cracks me up still.