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"...another reason I'm intrigued with the hanged of Salem, especially the women, is that a number of them aroused suspicion in the first place because they were financially independent, or sharp-tongued, or kept to themselves. In other words, they were killed off for the same sort of life I live right now but with longer skirts and fewer cable channels." Sarah Vowell, The partly cloudy patriot.


Pathologically honest

I have a tendency to be very honest, and have been often blamed for being too blunt. I'll never forget in undergrad having a meeting with one of the professors for whom I was a TA (in the theatre department, after you take all the acting classes, you can be a TA for them, which I did - well, we were called "pedagogs" which is a good term for it - sounds fancy). He was giving me feedback about how I came across to others, and said that I was very blunt, but because I have such a high, child-like voice, people often got confused by the mismatch between the tone and my words. He then mimicked me by using a falsetto voice and he said - as though he were me giving students feedback -- "I really hated your scene." I don't think I'm that blunt, but it certainly struck me.

When I was in grad school, I tried to be less so, but then got criticized roundly for being too indirect.

Anyway, I think I just have to accept that I am pathologically honest. I am horrible at being political and being nicey-nice, which has its plusses and minuses.

This example has little to do with the above, except it is an example of how my honesty can get me in trouble.

Yesterday I was on my way to the post office, and I realized that last week I had sent a package and had neglected to pay for the padded envelope I got there. I went to send my mom's dog his belated birthday gift (because I got into huge trouble with my mom for not having sent him a card), and picked up a padded envelope from the display. I then addressed it, and was about to stand in line - but it was so long, I went to the little shipping machine thing again - completely forgetting that I needed to pay for the envelope!!!

So, I had to send my mom her mother's day gift yesterday, got another padded envelope, and when I went to purchase it, I told that that last week I had gotten an envelope and had forgotten to pay for it, so I asked them to charge me for that one too. The woman forgot to do so, and so I reminded her of it. At this point there was quite a line, and I was pretty embarassed to be admitting that I had SHOPLIFTED last week (completely unintentionally though!). She kept saying, "So you took an envelope without paying for it?" and I kept saying yes, yes I did. It was fairly humiliating.

So, I bought the envelope, and then went to the machine to get postage (because the woman who sold me the envelopes couldn't weigh it). If you pay the 65 cents for tracking (can't believe it is extra!) you get a prepaid label to stick on your package. I got that, and wrote my mom's address on it. Unbeknownst to me, I used a pen that would not dry completely! I kept blowing on it and testing it, and it kept smearing. I wasn't sure what to do as to get a new label would cost the price of shipping (because it was a label with the postage on it). So I got back into that woman's line - I was at the end of the line and was more than happy to wait.

She saw me in line (behind like 5 people) and yelled, "What do *you* want now?" Oh jeez louisa. I asked if she had any clear tape I could put over the label, and she just yelled no.

So, even though I am very sorry for having inadvertently shoplifting, and feel good that I made amends with the united states postal service - it was a humiliating experience.


At 12:19 PM, Blogger Kate said...

I am so glad I'm not the only one! I am too honest as well -- my husband say that I have "no filter."

At 1:19 PM, Blogger Princess Pointful said...

This is my first time reading your blog... and I had to smile when I read about your mom getting mad that you didn't send the dog a birthday card.

My mom just got a grandmother card for Mother's Day from my sister's dog.

At 3:14 PM, Blogger Marie said...

Geez, were you at this post office?

I mean, come on, you were only asking the clerk to do her *job*. No reason for the attitude there.

At 10:38 PM, Blogger BrightStar said...

That clerk was plain rude.


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