Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Plays Well With Others (Well, Usually)

I've always thought of myself as a people person. I like being social as well as anyone, I've never been known to be shy, and I've rarely met a stranger. My conduct reports back in my school days always confirmed this with comments like "talkative during class" or "Susie needs to focus on her work as much as she focuses on her neighbors." I was even voted Mrs. Congeniality in a beauty pageant once. If that's not high praise for playing well with others, then I don't know how else to give it to you. However, in case you haven't noticed, the times--and people, for that matter--are a'changing. (And if you really haven't noticed, it's highly likely you are part of the problem and not the solution).

Now, I know we are all cut out of different cloth, and that being the same is boring. Heaven knows, my friends are all sorts of different characters, and I enjoy the company of someone who is unique. It's just that, lately, society seems to have made a change for the worse. We are accepting things as normal behavior that would make Emily Post roll over in her grave. We're not cringing anymore when people do cringe-worthy things. And I'm getting fed up. It's time to take a stand, so I'm putting out some guidelines. People person or not, if you commit the following offenses, I'm afraid it means we just can't be friends.

When you say, "I'm not bragging or anything, but..." you aren't fooling anyone, and you certainly aren't making any friends. Don't think for a second that little disclaimer hides the fact that you are, in fact, bragging about yourself, your dog, your child, your life, etc. Here's my disclaimer: if rolling my eyes so hard at your "non-bragging" causes me to have an aneurysm, I will sue. I'm not threatening or anything, but....

If you don't eat meat, dairy, gluten, soda, bread, fast food, or sugar, I applaud your very weird strict dietary efforts. I will make an attempt to understand why you punish yourself this way, and when you aren't around, I will even feel sorry for you for living your life in such a depraved, malnourished fashion. But if you insist on lecturing me about the evils of all these foods on your Do Not Consume list, we just cannot be friends. Into every life, a little Chex Mix must fall.

When you tell me that you don't watch a single show on the Bravo network, I will politely pretend to believe you and applaud your high intellectual standards. And then, I will befriend you, gain your trust, and find out which of the Real Housewives franchises is really your favorite. We all watch, and it's making us all dumber for it, but it's just such good, guilty pleasure. Once you admit that you're just as sinfully addicted as the rest of us, I think we can be friends.

If you use the word "ridic" (as in short for ridiculous) in conversation and you are not being humorous, ironic, or sarcastic, we probably cannot be friends. Totes, obvi, adorbs, awesomesauce, and amazeballs are one thing, but I have to draw the line somewhere.

You don't have to have big hair for us to be friends (granted, it helps), but I am going to need you to, at a minimum, understand its important place in society. After all, big hair rules the world. Southern women are only half joking when they say, "the higher the hair, the closer to heaven." If you need further proof that bigger is better, take a minute and Google "celebrities with big hair"--the images that will bombard you are a who's who of Hollywood. And for historical reference, may I present this:

These savvy women (and their amazingly coiffed hair) would never steer you wrong. A picture is worth a thousand words. And in this case, about three gallons of extra firm hold hairspray.

If I invite you to my house for dinner, and you tell me beforehand that you don't have any food allergies and you like every single food in existence, then do not show up to the table and complain that there are mushrooms in the green beans, or that the homemade roasted red pepper hummus is "a little too spicy." And definitely do not bemoan the three-layer chocolate s'mores cake I have lovingly prepared for you as "way too rich." I know most of you would never do that, but it actually happened to me a few years ago with some (now former) friends of ours. Let's just say I figured out quickly that we did not play well together, and we could not be friends. Don't let the door hit your cake-hating arse on the way out, folks.

If you don't love dogs, don't like mayonnaise (I'm looking at you, Jen), think that things called "flirtinis" are real martinis (no, no, no, they are most certainly not), wear white after Labor Day, or are one of those freakish people who actually need to gain weight, I don't want to be unreasonable and rule you out just yet. Let's just say it's negotiable. We can try things out on a probationary term and see if I can bring you around how it goes.

In the meantime, if none of these attributes describe you, I think we can play together. Meet me on the playground at recess. It'll be ridic.


  1. Susie, are you guys staying dry there? Hope everything is good for you there!

    1. We are staying dry and thankful that we did not have the flooding that Columbia and other areas did...and happy to see the sun out this morning!


Remember: brains and looks will only take you so far, but flattery will get you everywhere.