Friday, 8 July 2011


I feel like I'm really returning to my old self again this week. My old, horrible, grumpy, rude self. I'll be very honest with you, all that scares me. But it is completely your fault.

Not all of it, just most of it. Firstly, last week when I was on my way to a preview gig I saw a man on the train purposely drop his ticket receipt on the ground. I quietly screamed inside my own head until the train arrived when I turned to the man and said "Oh, look. You've dropped your ticket". He turned round to pick up his dropped ticket but then saw it was just the receipt. You know, the receipt that he didn't want anymore. The one he just threw on the ground for someone else to pick up. He started to get on the train so I repeated "You've dropped your ticket". "No", he said. "It's just the receipt". I asked him if he thought that was OK to just throw it on the ground and he grunted like he didn't understand the question. "Are you going to pick it up?" I asked. He looked angry now. "NO".

He took his seat and I sat beside him. Within seconds he had his finger and his thumb, HIS THUMB, up his nostrils having a good old pick. Right up there with his finger and thumb giving his entire head a good thorough clear out, by the looks of things. Before I could tell him how revolting he was, he wiped his finger and thumb on the side of his seat.

"NO FUCKING WAY", I said. "God, man, what age are you? You're in your 30's and you pick your nose in public and wipe it on the seats?"

He went bright red, got up and changed carriage. A victory? No. The next stop a massive man who looked insane came on and sat next to me listening to his loud, awful music. He looked scary. I said nothing. Bring back Noseypick!

Then on my way to my next preview, I got off the tube during rush hour. The doors opened and a very big man just immediately got on without letting any passengers off first. The insane part of my skull immediately took over and I put my hand flat on his chest and pushed him back on to the platform, all the while shouting "RUUUUUUUUUUUDE!"

OK, those two examples weren't really your fault but the next one definitely is. Yesterday I took a bus to Stella Duffy's house to do some work on my solo Edinburgh show. I got the P4 bus and as soon as I sat down I heard the loud, awful music. I've said it before but, really, why is it only people with terrible taste in music that feel the need to share it on public transport? I sat there for three or four minutes just staring at YOU and all YOU did was just accept this rude woman polluting our journey with her musical dung. It was as if no one else could hear the moronic and repetitive beat coming from her iPod or, and this is just a guess, I was once again on public transport with spineless shadow people who are too terrified to just ask a woman to turn her music down. It's not like this woman was the man who replaced Noseypick. That man was weird and I wouldn't have encouraged anyone to approach him. This was just a regular person.

I thought.

She was two seats in front so I got up and tapped her on the shoulder. Here's what happened. She took her earphones out and I said "Excuse me, could you turn your music down, please?"


"Because it's very loud. Everyone can hear it".

"Yeah, that's your problem."

I was confused and said "Noooo, it's too loud and everyone can hear it so can you turn it down, please?"

"It's my earphones".


"I'm using earphones".

"Yes, but the volume is so loud that everyone else can hear".

"Yeah, that's your problem. It's not like I'm listening to it out loud, I've put earphones in."

"But you are playing it out loud. It's up so loud that everyone can hear it."

"Yeah, that's your problem.

This went on for a very long time. Round and round with her always saying the same thing "Yeah, that's your problem". But let's skip to the end. This is how it all finished.

"That's the thing", I said. "It's not my problem. It's definitely your problem. Why are you listening to your music so loudly?"

This utterly baffled her. Genuinely her eyes raised upwards so much it was like she was trying to read what her brain was thinking. She had no answer, so I helped. "It's so you can hear it, right?"


"Right. And that's why it's your problem. If you had your music turned down a bit then you could listen to it but instead you've turned it up so loudly that all you have is me talking to you and stopping you hearing anything but me". And this is when the insane "Give me your shoe" version of me took over. I started tapping her shoulder repeatedly while smiling and saying "Annoying isn't it? Isn't it? It's annoying. It's very annoying. Isn't that annoying? That's what hearing your music is like".

She was too thick to get anything that I was saying plus I was going mad so I sat down. Gradually, slowly, bit by bit she turned her music down until I couldn't hear it. WHY DIDN'T SHE JUST DO THAT IN THE FIRST PLACE? WHY DIDN'T YOU SAY SOMETHING TO HER? WHY DOES IT ALWAYS HAVE TO BE ME? WHY CAN'T YOU DO IT FOR A FUCKING CHANGE? WHY DIDN'T YOU EVEN SUPPORT ME WHILE I WAS DOING IT? I. HATE. YOU.

Look, you really are going to have to pull your socks up. I'm writing a show about being polite and I'm turning into my insanely rude self again. If you love me then you'll ask those dicks to turn their music down first before I start frothing and flinging my madness at them. Please, I'm asking you as a friend, help me.

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PeeT! Clack said...

I you! ;o)

BLaCKouT said...

I've been asked to turn my music down once on public transport. I apologised genuinely, and turned it down. I really didn't realise other people could hear it.
I'm now conscious when I'm on the bus/train of people giving me 'the look'. It hasn't happened again.

I wouldn't dream of being that rude to a stranger.

Then again, I'm not "the public".
Make of that what you will.

Dave said...

When I was young and stupid, I'd sometimes turn up the volume of my (rubbish) music to unpleasant volume if a girl sat next to me on a bus - obviously hoping she'd be so impressed by my shit taste and lack of social awareness that she'd go out with me.

It never worked, obviously. What a dick.

G said...

Friday afternoon, during a cigarette break, I was approached by a young man who was approx 18 years old. He asked, “Can I have a smoke?” (Upward inflection… even though his voice was monotonous) I handed him a cigarette because I had a full pack. When I was younger, I used to bum smokes from strangers. Treat other people the way you want to be treated - this is normal, right?

The next thing I know, this total stranger - who I’ve JUST given a cigarette to - clicked his fingers in my face and barked “light” at me!!!! No ‘please’ or any acknowledgement whatsoever! Just a crass demand for to use my lighter! (OK – to be fair he was about 6ft whilst I am a short Chinese lady - maybe the finger in face was just unfortunate height thing. Or maybe I can be unfair and conclude he is just an arrogant spoilt brat who is used to his parents running around doing everything for him that he thinks the world revolves around him.)

I was stunned. My face distorted into a cartoonlike quizzical yet repulsed expression. This stranger must have though I didn’t understand English so he mimed using a lighter then pointed to my lighter.

I saw red. In my loudest and sternest voice, “Do you want to fucking say PLEASE?” and I lit his cigarette.

I am a smoker. I know how to light a cigarette. But he even had the gall to check the cig was lit then mumbled, “Er, thanks” and walked away.

This is not where this story ends. As I finish my own cigarette, I see him and his mate on the other side of road. They are laughing and pointing in my direction and looking at the cigarette. What a complete and utter fuckwit.

I told my colleagues about what just happened. They were shocked at the rudeness and suggested that next time to refuse any cigarette requests.

I don’t know why I’m so annoyed with this encounter. The subject even crept into the pub and ruined a perfectly good cider. My friends told me to 'man up' and not let it bother me. That’s life, get used to it and move on.

Sorry, this has turned into a bit of a rant but I’m awake at stupid o’clock and thought I’d check to see if I won the Euro Millions (I haven’t).

I only wanted to say that your blog struck a chord with me. I don’t have to tolerate rudeness - or ignore it. Rudeness and general inconsideration for others will make anyone angry and grumpy.

I really enjoy reading your blog. Thank you!

Michael Legge said...

Thanks for writing, G, and well done for telling that idiot off. It's just staggering how many people have no idea that it should be perfectly normal to simply be polite. They're cunts.