This is going to be another one of those posts where at the start I say I’m not something and then I spend the next 700 words sounding exactly like the thing I said I wasn't.
Just so we're on the same page about where this is headed.
Anyway, so, I’m totally not a pervert. Well, ok fine, maybe a little, but I swear I’m at worst only slightly above the average level.
What I definitely am is someone who does not like to make eye contact with the people he’s talking to. I mean, I'll do it, but god damn is it a struggle.
I prefer to sort of stare off into space just to the right or left of people or at my shoes and occasionally nod or mumble “yeah” so they know I’m still with them.
Sure it's kind of rude, but eye contact is a very intense thing and very intense things make me feel icky and squirmy inside.
And most of the time, that’s all it is: a mildly rude habit. However, there are cases when it could have the potential to possibly get me into trouble.
I’m talking about when I’m talking to the ladies. Not in the sense of me “spitting some mad game their way” either. No just standard, completely innocent and without any sort of romantic intent stuff like “Weather, am I right?”
While we’re locked in the throes of that most casual of throwaway conversations, I’ll be busy doing my usual move of staring everywhere but the person’s eyes.
With the fellas, no issue, but with the ladies? Eesh. See, there’s a certain geographic feature located at chest level that’s much more interesting on the ladies than on the fellas.
So as we’re talking about the weather and I’m looking at my shoes or her shoes or someone else’s shoes I start to get the idea in my head: “Does she think I’m staring at her boobs? Can she tell I’m not and I’m actually studying a bit of carpet slightly to the side of her? Or does she simply noticing my head and eyes declined at a slight downward angle and think to herself ‘Here’s another scumbag looking at my girls.”
I find this situation even trickier when I’m sitting across a table or a desk from a lady.
Once again, with a dude, I’m staring at his fork or napkin or the empty chair off to his side.
But when it’s a girl across the table from me, suddenly her chest is literally everywhere that every fiber in my being is telling me to put my eyes.
Usually I’ll find myself staring a few inches over the top of her head, which is a safe-zone as far as being mistaken for a pervert goes. Unfortunately, while it conveys no sexual intent whatsoever, it also sends the message that I’m either completely exasperated by your viewpoint or that a large pterodactyl is hovering right above your head.
One of the two.
There are first world problems and there are white people problems and there are rich people problems and so on.
I’d say this one fits well into the crazy people problems hashtag.
I guess it’s an easy one to solve: Just make eye contact. It most likely won’t kill me, but then again, I’m sure Amish folks most likely are sure that having their picture taken won’t cost them their soul, but you don’t see them taking any chances.
I’m not even totally sure that this even counts as a problem. Maybe the girls I’m talking to just think: “Why’s this guy always looking over my head or at my shoes?”
I don’t know how easy it is to tell when someone oogling you in an inappropriate way because as far as I know, it’s never happened to me.
Since eye contact is out of the question, the only other answer to this is clear. Ladies of the world who may come into casual contact with me: Starter pullover jackets. Year-round.
It’s literally the only way.
Sure you’ll be swelteringly hot in the summer and sure those coats haven’t been in style since Pogs went away, but I’m going to need you all, as a gender, to take this bullet for me.
In return, I’ll offer you the deed to the remote control. It’s all yours. Put on whatever you’d like when you’re in my presence, no questions asked. That’s a damn good deal. You’re not going to get a deal like that from just anywhere.
Take some time to huddle up and think over my proposal. I’ll be right here, looking just down and to the left of you all, until I panic because I think that you think I might be looking at your bums.