Recently, I bumped into someone whom I’d met once before. Part of the conversation went like this
Me: Hi Vanessa*
Her: Oh, I wonder who told you my name. We are used to people like you ignoring people like us.
(??? Wait, what? This escalated fast)
Me: Huh? ?Who are these people like you and who are people like me?
Her: Us, small entrepreneurs who aren’t seen.
(At this point, I am beyond flabbergasted. Why did I have to greet? Life kyeki? So many questions.)
Me: What have I done to make you feel this way?
Her: I sent you a message upon recommendation asking that we work together and you blue ticked me, but we are used to that.
Again, this doesn’t sound like something I’d knowingly do but I apologise all the same, then go ahead to ask
Me: Was this on WhatsApp?
Me: Please share your number.
She reads it to me, I save it and then go to my chats just because I wanted closure. The message read “Hey”
Now, I will be honest (and I told her the same) I do not reply messages that come in the form of a single “Hi, Hey, Hello….” from unknown numbers. If you took the time to reach out, surely a few extra seconds of including your ask shouldn’t hurt? She later admitted that she doesn’t reply those either and then attempted to find another way to ‘trap’ me ?
While I can’t remember receiving her message 3 months ago, I know that I did what I do all the time, opened, saw a number I didn’t know with no picture and went on about my business, hoping there will be a follow-up message explaining what the “Hey” was all about.
Now, if Vanessa was able to come at me with her chest like this, sharing a ‘partial truth,’ I can only imagine how else this story has been modified in my absence. I don’t really blame her. I was merely an easy/available target. She sees the rejection she has experienced from different people manifest even when it isn’t exactly there.
How many times have you gone to a gathering then later met up with a friend and said “Can you imagine Tom ignored me the whole time? Not even a hello and I’m sure he saw me.”
Well, dear Conqueror of the seeing empire, what did you do when you saw Tom?
“Beth looked at me badly.” “Oh my God, me too!”
As someone who has both looked at someone ‘badly’ and been looked at ‘badly,’ I can comfortably say that it is rarely about you. I know people with terrible eyesight or conditions which are beyond spects/contacts. They are looking at you but they aren’t seeing you, at all. While we are on this sight thing, some others have been overly blessed with this gift of sight through the vessel of big round eyes. You are just minding your business, glancing small small, the headline story is that you are proud and you roll your eyes, while looking down on people (now imagine if you’ve been endowed with height as well, so this is literal!) Then bambi some of our faces naturally don’t have the softest features, even at our happiest, they say we are sneering so we can’t win..but also, no one owes anyone a constantly smiling face. Are we living in the same world with all these issues? It is anxiety Susan, that is why we can’t come running to say hello.
So anyway, in a world of killer viruses, our Los Angeles villages accessed only by Ayrr-burss and the days so far which already feel like a decade, let us not hate people who did not choose the size of their eyes and switch all our anger time to typing “Hey,” followed by our actual request.