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Thread: The City Makes Me An Idiot!

  1. #1

    Default The City Makes Me An Idiot!

    So I was in the city today, going to see The Lion King on my drama club's big trip. Being a New Yorker, it's not like this is my first time ever being in the city; I've gone plenty of times before. I take pride in my understanding of how things work in the world, especially in NYC, and one basic fact is to (most of the time, anyway) ignore the vendors on the side of the street giving away "free" stuff" (CDs, tickets, memorabilia, etc.). I also know that, as a minor, I should never give my name away to any random person I see.

    Today, however, I realized something. I turn into a friggin' idiot when I'm in the city! Maybe it's the rush of everything around me or my mind's inability to focus on one thing when there are so many amazing things around me, but today my mind just totally went blank! I was walking down the street, in the back of the group, and we pass by a guy giving away a CD. Unfortunately, for some reason, I stopped when the guy held out his CD to me. I don't even like the music on this guy's CD, but my hand just moved on it's own and took it! It's like my mind just didn't want to walk away! Then I start to walk away with the "free" CD, when suddenly, the guy stops me again and says he'll give me his autograph. Like hell I want this guy's signature on a CD I don't even want, but when he asks me for my name, instead of just stepping off and leaving, I flat out say it! Yes, I know it's really not a big deal, but I felt like years of those friggin' "stranger danger" talks with my parents just went down the crapper.

    Fortunately, my teacher snapped me back to reality and told me to come. I quickly handed the guy the CD and walked away, receiving some very irritating comments from the man behind me as I walked away. I told my teacher that I wasn't even trying to do anything, but he just shot me down and walked away in a huff. Just to add insult to injury, not only did I get caught in that guy's trap, but I now looked like a naive little kid in front of a person I see on a daily basis! I just feel so naive and stupid...I was so irritated after that, but there really wasn't anything I could do.

    For that whole day I seemed to be in some weird kind of trance. While walking into the theater, the security guard asked to see my bag. I had one of my headphones in my ear, and my hearing isn't the best after a few years at a rock music camp, so I didn't hear him right. Normally I could've just read his lips or figured out what he wanted by rationalizing things, but instead, I take off my bag and hand it to the guy. This causes him to snap at me, telling my to actually open it and show him the contents, and it takes me about a full minute in a crowded theater lobby of fumbling with my bag before I finally open it. I mean what the hell?!

    /rant

    *sigh* Does anyone else have this kind of problem?

  2. #2

    Default

    The largest city I've ever been to was Indianapolis, as I live in Indiana. LOL that place was HUGE!!! I went with my church youth group, and we all knew the dangers of walking around a city at night, but me and a few of my friends walked around for about an hour, just being noisy and excited. We were all acting like complete idiots that night, but we had one heck of a time

    It was awesome, but looking back, I realize that we were stupid and reckless . I kinda wonder what New York is like, though.

  3. #3

    Default

    It doesn't seem to be a story of "city-idiocy", but rather simply human kindness overtaking common sense. You were suddenly propelled into a situation and temporally lost your bearings. So, you defaulted to being a kind person and just tried to make the situation end as simply as possible.

  4. #4

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Alphacore View Post
    It doesn't seem to be a story of "city-idiocy", but rather simply human kindness overtaking common sense. You were suddenly propelled into a situation and temporally lost your bearings. So, you defaulted to being a kind person and just tried to make the situation end as simply as possible.
    I'm mainly just mad at myself for falling into such a scam so easily...it's like my pride as a New Yorker is damaged or something. I know, it's stupid, but it's an annoyingly persistent feeling I get when making stupid decisions like that around my peers.

  5. #5
    acorn

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    Quote Originally Posted by Natsu View Post
    I'm mainly just mad at myself for falling into such a scam so easily...it's like my pride as a New Yorker is damaged or something. I know, it's stupid, but it's an annoyingly persistent feeling I get when making stupid decisions like that around my peers.
    If you are interested, when I was in NY it was an education, even for me. Being the guardian of my tribe, it was up to me to keep it together. It is an illusion that you pass unnoticed as you make your way through the crowds. You are always being watched by people who will use you to further their own interests. I caught a guy with a fleeting gesture point out my group to stallholders in Chinatown, he was indicating what he believed was a “soft touch” with money to purchase “bargains” (knockoff tripe). I won’t mention the two clowns that thought I might be “ripe” for a “cultural exchange” (mugging) on the upper reaches of Broadway. Even with those two extremes the trip was a blast. The question would I go back, If I could I’d be on the plane already.

    The city has a draw for you in that you have good memories of it, the hustle and bustle with something new always happening. You see, there is the real problem in that, it is so easy to get caught up in what is happening around you, that you inadvertently let your guard down. The CD hustler saw his opportunity and moved on it, lucky for you this was busted by the teacher. It was this incident that set the tone for the rest of the day, you were so rattled and pissed by what had happened that the rest of the day passed in a fog.

    It is as simple as life being a comedy of errors, the important part is to continue to build upon your experiences. We all make mistakes, what we hope is to be able to mitigate the potential for damages and look forward to seeing a brand new day, hopefully unscathed. In life you will trade your youth and innocence for age and experience, keep safe and enjoy the journey.

  6. #6
    Peachy

    Default

    I guess it takes some experience to ignore those people handing out "free" stuff. I learned my lesson rather early (although later than you) when some dude approached me while shopping and went "Do you like music and movies?". So he talked me into allowing him to send me a "free" catalogue, but suddenly asked for ID to "copy my name off of it". I told him I can very well spell my own address. Finally, he wanted me to sign ...twice. I thought "hmm...why does he need a signature" Suddenly, it clicked...asked for ID; wanted two signatures, and when he approached me, he also asked if I was 18. He wanted to sell me some sort of music/video or magazine subscription, so I told him "no signatures" and walked off. He shouted after me that he should charge me 5 bucks for wasting his time, and I told him to have intercourse with his alter ego. If that happened now, I would have called the cops, but back then, I was glad to have gotten out of it without any harm.

    So now I ignore everyone trying to hand me something, begging for money or otherwise approaching me for conducting surveys. That includes those random bums asking for 10 cents for a phonecall, the guys in a Manchester tram telling a story (in a credible Canadian accent) about supposedly being Canadian and having lost his plane tickets home and now needs a few pounds for the bus to the airport. You know..if people need to make a phone call, they can just ask to use my phone (I have unlimited free calls anyway), and why would someone buy a tram ticket to beg for money for a bus ticket? :confused
    I also ignored the beggar on the Moscow subway who was repeatedly hitting her child so the little one would cry, and then begged the passengers for money. Not gonna give her anything or I'd encourage her to mistreat her kid even more.
    This reminds me of a funny incident in another city: Some religious group was handing out free books. So every person who couldn't keep their hands in their pockets ended up with a stack of 5 books in their hands. Every trashcan for the next mile was overflowing with those books though..I guess they weren't the latest Pulitzer Prize novel but some boring preaching by religious nutcakes after all.

    So yeah, I probably would have ignored those CDs. I wonder why they hand them out anyway. How do they expect to make money off it?

    Peachy

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