Archive for the ‘Overheard’ Category

As Promised, Tension At The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

April 18, 2014

Holocaust-interior_2344

This post should be an interesting attempt to relay an uncomfortable yet amusing incident whilst still maintaining an a modicum of respect towards the setting. Hopefully, this won’t come off as “yah, so we were at that Nazi place in DC and these bitches…” Knowing me, it probably will. Alas!

The other Mr. Harvey and I were in DC to celebrate his 40th birthday at the beginning of this month. He’s not one for big parties where people look at him (that was actually a concern he voiced once…people looking at him…when he doesn’t have his hijab on) so we thought a quick jaunt somewhere fun would be keen. Plus, we’re both currently unemployed (we’re the American nightmare) and had the time laying around and look, Jet Blue has a deal! Cherry blossoms and new bars in which to get intoxicated and new sidewalks to stumble upon while drunkenly abusing Uber!

Despite it being a birthday trip, there were some tourist attractions we had wanted to see that weren’t exactly going to be the ball pit at Chuckie Cheese (that’s not a gay sex reference). We had both heard that the main exhibit at the Holocaust Museum was a sobering must-see. We got our tickets online for our 1st day there so we could get the horror portion of the other Mr. Harvey’s birthday out of the way.

It’s an interesting space. I wouldn’t call it pleasant because it’s designed to evoke concentration camp imagery with a lot of brick and exposed girders. Another interesting feature? The staff, for the most part, are made up of some really extreme personalities. Most of the service industry members we encountered in our nation’s capital that trip were really friendly, laid-back and warm. I’m not sure why, but most of the staff at the Holocaust Memorial were WROUGHT. Witness our first exchange with the female human that womans the entrance elevators to the main exhibit.

We make our way in-between her velvet ropes (that came out dirty) but Scotty has us pause so we can call up our tickets on his phone. Please note in advance that there is no line behind us or in front of us. At that moment it’s just the Harveys. My husband has been searching and scrolling for maybe two seconds when she attacked.

Holocaust worker: Tickets?

Husband: Just calling them up on my phone here…

Holocaust worker (perhaps she didn’t hear him?): I said, do you have tickets?

Me: He’s just getting them on his phone.

Holocaust worker: Well, maybe you should move over there to find them so you’re not blocking the way, ok?

I look behind me and note the absence of any other people behind us. Just some velvet ropes. Air. Is this a fire exit? My husband, who does not suffer being spoken down to by fools, bitches, or maniacs, jerks his head up from his phone. Sometimes I feel like there’s a rubber band stretched to its extreme in his brain. That rubber band is marked “JUST TRY IT, BITCH.” I myself loathe confrontation. I’m the shrinking violet who nervously laughs when he forgets to hold a door for someone AND RUNS BACK TO DO IT because I want them to know I didn’t do it out of spite. It makes me look like a wackjob but it’s all designed to not get a dirty look or have anyone think “remember that asshole who didn’t hold the door for me at the mall” before they fall asleep that evening.

Anyway…

“I’M CALLING IT UP RIGHT NOW,” he said in a slow, emphatic tone. Oh dear. Before Officer Friendly could ignore that and ask for tickets again in a disgusted monotone, they popped up on his phone. She waved us through towards a bank of elevators with a chubby, indifferent hand. Another holocaust worker shot out of nowhere with blond curls and a peppy demeanor. She was the radiant ying to ticket bitch’s yang. You would have thought she was seating us at a Disneyworld character breakfast. She had obviously never read up on XYKLON-B or what they were making the lampshades with in Nazi Germany.

We were put in an elevator with a large, equally happy family. Mom was smiling widely as they bantered. She was standing directly in front of the elevator’s panel of buttons. Smiling. No button was pressed. Nothing was lit up. Nothing was moving. A couple of dreary pics of German soldiers added to my discomfort from above. Do I…move her? What do I say? Can I get in there? What if she thought I meant her ass? Her ass was almost ON the panel. NOTHING WAS HAPPENING. WE WEREN’T MOVING. There’s no switch outside they can press? It’s hot in here. They’re talking like it’s fine. Is this like the Haunted Mansion and we’re actually going down but it’s so mechanically deft we can’t feel it? Scotty didn’t notice. He’s looking at his phone and reading the walls. Swiss Family Oblivious are laughing and chatting like it’s the cherry blossom festival. THERE’S GONNA BE FOOTAGE OF EMACIATED CORPSES BEING MOVED OFF OF TRUCKS WITH PITCHFORKS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THOSE DOORS. I HAVE TO GET OUT OF HERE. I made my move.

“Can I…” I advanced towards Denim Elevator Panel Ass, weakly pointing behind her. She looked at me, and then turned to see why I was invading her space. Her mouth opened wide and she began giggling.

“Oh! OH! We were just sitting here! I’m sorry!”

“Way to go, Mom!”

“Duh, Ma!”

I smiled nervously (“Oh, that,’s ok!’ I shrieked), sweat beads barreling down my ivory expanse of a 10-head. Social anxiety is the fucking worst. Button pressed. Nothing happened.

Nothing happened. We were in a hot elevator with nothing happening. They didn’t even give us a button light for assurance. Was this part of the show? That’s fine, we deserved to suffer. We deserved a portly ticket taker making us feel stupid. We didn’t go through what all those people went through. We deserve to sweat and feel awkward in this hell-avator.

The doors sprang open. Cool air rushed in. The happy Holocaust worker regarded us quizzically. Blonde curls bounced as she cocked her head to the side like a curious toy poodle.

“Well, um, wait? What happened?”

“I guess we weren’t going anywhere…” Denim Elevator Panel Ass Mom offered helpfully. Happy went to get Grumpy. She waddled over with a ring of keys and her usual stank face. Resentfully flipping open a little door on the panel, she shoved a key in, and pressed the button again with a girthy finger.

“This breaks…,” she announced moodily to no one in particular. She was never one for an apology.

The doors shut, the floor shook and hydraulics hummed. Up.

(more…)

Overheard On A Flight To Indianapolis….

September 22, 2013

Grumpy

US Airways Flight I Don’t Have My Old Boarding Pass In Front Of Me To Indianapolis
Tarmac, Logan, Approximately 1:15 PM

There is a middle-aged bordering on elderly couple sitting two rows behind me.

There is a shrieking toddler behind them.

The husband begins to grumble.

Husband (turned around and looking back over his seat at the child’s guardian): You’re going to have to do something about that.

Guardian: (murmurs something I don’t catch)

Toddler: AAAIEEEEEEHHHHHHHHH! AAAAOOWWWWWWWW! MMMMMMOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWW! RRRRRRRAAAAARRR!

Husband: HE IS KICKING MY CHAIR! HE PULLED MY WIFE’S HAIR!

Guardian: (silence)

Toddler: AAAIEEEEHHH!! STOP STABBING ME, PLANE GHOST! IS THAT BLOOD COMING OUT OF MY MOUTH? MY SCREAMS ARE LEGEND!

Husband (to the female flight attendant currently helping a couple in the row across from me stow their bullshit-sized carry-ons, seriously, just fucking check it, you’re ruining everything by trying to store the Ark of the fucking Covenant in the overhead bin): Miss? MISS? We need help here!

Entire plane  (to themselvessome excited and others dreading what’s to come): Oh, it’s on now…

The flight attendant is early 40s, pleasant-looking but also has that veteran passenger wrangler air about her. This dude is clearly in trouble if he thinks he’s going to tussle with her.

Flight attendant: Yes, sir? How can I help you?

Husband: You NEED to do something about this (I assume he indicated the horror behind him with an indignant thumb). He is KICKING MY CHAIR. And he has PULLED MY WIFE’S HAIR ALREADY! He keeps KICKING MY CHAIR.

Oddly, it bothers me somewhat that he keeps referring to his seat as a “chair”. That’s not a chair. Stop it.

Flight attendant: Sir, we have a full flight. There are no empty seats. Let me see if I can resolve this, though. Ok?

Husband: *harumph*

Toddler: FFFUCCKCCK THISS GUYYYY!!! I AM GOING TO SCCREEAMMMMM!! AAIIEEEEEHH!! MURDER DEATH BODIES BLOOD!!!!

I can hear the attendant talking in a hushed tone with the child’s guardian. The child’s screaming volumes down slightly. The attendant makes her way back up the aisle to the front of the plane. The child’s screaming ratchets up to maximum volume. Shifty kid.

Husband. Great. GREAT. Can you believe this?

We can believe it. The entire plane hates you and that kid. It would be a toss-up as to which of you we would jettison if we were allowed. Probably you, because toddlers can be cute.

The flight attendant makes her way down the aisle heading to the back of the plane.

Toddler: AAAIEEEEHHHH!! THIS BITCH CAN’T SHUT ME UP! DREAM ON, ASSHOLE! AAAIIEEEEHHH!!!! WWWHHYYY ISS GOD TORMENTING ME SO THAT I HAVE TO SCREAM THIS LOUD!!!!

Husband (losing it): MISS! MISS! THIS IS ENOUGH! WE PAID A LOT OF MONEY FOR THESE TICKETS AND HE WON’T STOP KICKING MY SEAT AND HE’S PULLED MY WIFE’S HAIR! YOU NEED TO DO SOMETHING OR WE’RE GONNA HAVE A PROBLEM!

Me: (under my breath) Seriously?

The guy to the left of me: (under his breath) Asshole.

The guy to the right of me: (under his breath) Sky Mall has some cool shit.

Flight attendant (gritting her teeth but keeping it together): Sir, I have already explained to you that this flight is FULL. There is nowhere to move you or your wife to. I’m very sorry. These things happen. Perhaps…

Husband (interrupting her ass): REALLY? REALLY? OK, HOWABOUT YOU SIT HERE AND TAKE THIS AND I’LL WALK UP AND DOWN THE AISLES, DOO TOO DOO!

Yes, the last thing he said was in a sing-songy voice meant to imply that she walked up and down the aisles like she had some brain components missing. The entire plane went silent (except for the kid so maybe they didn’t go silent because jesus, he was loud). I could HEAR her jaw tighten.

Before she could respond (I actually heard an intake of breath because she was going to let him have it), a couple approached her and they conferred.

Flight attendant: Sir, these gracious people have been generous enough to offer to switch seats with you. That’s all I can do for you. Hurry now.

Husband: Fine. Fine. You know, I like kids. I don’t hate kids. We have grandchildren. It’s just that he was pulling my…

Flight attendant (over it and talking down to him so blatantly that I’m waiting for him to accuse her of pulling his wife’s hair): Hurry! Hurry now! Hurry up! We’re waiting to taxi because of this. Please hurry!

Toddler: III’MMM SSTTTILLL SCREAMING, MOTHERFUCKERS!!!!!! FLECKS OF BLOOD FROM MY VOCAL CHORDS ARE SPATTERING ALL OF YOUR HAIR AND MAGAZINES!!!!!

The kid stopped crying the very second we left the runway, and remained quiet until we touched down. At which point he began screaming again. *end scene*

Overheard: Wollaston MBTA Station 6:45 PM (FIGHT!)

August 1, 2012

“DUDE FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK DUDE!”

“FUCK FUCK FUCK DUDE FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK!”

“DUDE DUDE DUDE DUDE FUCK FUCK FUCK!”

That’s how their conversation initially sounded to the person unschooled in “young douchebag.” Eventually I and the other spectators who were just trying to mind our individual business while waiting for our rides were able to figure out that someone gave someone a dirty look. A girlfriend might have been involved? Pinhead #1 was white and short. Pinhead #2 was perhaps Filipino(?) and short. I say “Filipino” because he had brown skin and Asian features. I am a close-to-middle aged white woman and I have next to no clue how to discern between certain ethnicities. White people in America are clueless. There’s guilt about it. To be frank, there’s not so much “guilt” as there is “fear of being found out as ignorant.” Yes, I worry about these things.

Pinheads #1 and #2 did a lot of literal chest thumping, I noticed Pinhead #2 still had one earbud in. Was he being coached? It’s like Cyrano De Roxanne!I need to completely remove my ear buds when I speak to people, and when I order at Dunkies so I am sure to SCREAM at the counter person without meaning to.

The threats and dialogue got increasingly more amusing. It was confirmed by the smirks and chuckles of the two other young men trying to separate them.

“Dude, you wanna fucking go? You wanna fucking go?”

“I’ll fucking slap you, man.”

“You’re gonna stab me? YOU’RE GONNA STAB ME, MOTHERFUCKER?!?!”

I’ve never seen someone get so enraged by thinking someone threatened to stab them. Most people would just run, or find a brick, or call a cop. Pinhead #1 began clawing at the neck of his t-shirt, and flexing his (sub-standard) muscles. It reminded me faintly of Randy “Macho Man” Savage, a former WWF (that’s what they called it back then) wrestler whom I used to watch as a child and thrill to his weird speech intonations when I wasn’t staring at spandexed man ass and pretending to care about champion belt match outcomes.

There’s more –

(more…)

Overheard: MBTA Car, Inbound, Ashmont to Alewife, 8:25 AM

September 7, 2010

Dramatis Personae:

Some guy, late 20s, maybe on a couple of Percocets, t-shirt, dirty spikey brown hair, cotton sweatpants (not gathered at the ankles, but not sure why he didn’t go there given his personality),completely self-involved, not cute.

A quiet MBTA car. His phone rings.

(The following is NOT verbatim, but I’m going to make it look like it is cuz’ it’s more amusing that way. But it’s pretty accurate. Picture a phone conversation taking place as if we were the surroundings in his living room. Which I would assume to be plenty of empty prescription bottles with the labels scraped off, some seeds on the scarred coffee table, and some empty Papa Gino’s boxes.)

“Hi honey. HI! Yeah, the T. Yeah, did John call? JOHN!…”

(Let me interrupt for a second by mentioning I thought at first he asked “did the john call you” and I was over-the-moon delighted because that meant he was a pimp, she was a hooker and we were going to get a fascinating behind-the-scenes look into the daily workings of a pimp and his ho. Alas, no, John’s some guy who was late.)

“Yeah, no. 7:45. Well, no I’m on the T. I SAID I WAS ON THE T! JESUS CHRIST! Yeah, oh, well, call me when he gets there. So I’m looking at the Metro…”

(He’s got The Boston Metro open on his lap, and I would have given him a pass if he just called to read her one of the amusing animal stories they run because that’s just funny that he chose to call her to relate a story about a dog that put out a house fire or a Capuchin monkey that can do long division on the commute to work(?). But no, it wasn’t a funny animal story. At this point, the woman seated in between us turned to stare at him when he began relaying the contents of the newspaper to the non-prostitute on the line. It was a long stare, too. However, it was completely ignored. How do you ignore the person beside you staring at you?!? Simple – Percocet and a complete disregard for, well, everything.)

“…and that guy we met in Southie is in a picture in there! Southie! The barber shop? Remember the guy who worked at the barber shop that got in the fight with Louie and thought he was mad cute? Yeah, him. There’s a big picture of the barber shop and this guy Wally. WALLY. Nah. So yeah, it’s here in the paper and I’m like ‘holy shit I know that guy.’ No, it’s some section of the paper where they, ok, “..daily we throw a dart at a section of the community and bring you…” it’s just some part of the fucking paper. Yeah, they have barber chairs and shit…I know, it’s crazy.”

(He still has the Metro open on his lap and is excitedly relaying how it works to her. He has chosen this moment to explain to his non-lady of the evening the various sections of the Metro, and how it serves us as Bostonians. It’s really touching, it’s like Newspapers in Education on this train. What a resource this man is. At this point, the woman beside me has broken her stare and taken out her texting device and hurriedly begun typing away to anyone who will read what she thinks about this dude. I try like hell to see what she’s typing but our outer thighs are already touching, and any more contact would be obscene and perhaps misconstrued.)

“So, what are you doing…”

(And with THAT question, all the eyes on the train rolled so hard that we almost derailed. Staring Texter Lady began to reach in her purse for her razor. This could be a looonnnggg conversation if she didn’t squash it. I would have lied for her in court.)

“Oh, you gotta go to the bathroom? Ok. Ok. Yeah, I’m on the T. Near JFK. Ok. Love you. LOVE YOU. I love you. No, I love you so much. LOVE YOU.”

*beep*

Everyone breathes a sigh of relief, and silently thanks the sadly non-world’s oldest profession worker for her pressing bladder issue.

Staring Texter Lady withdraws an empty hand from her purse, takes sort of a combination annoyed neck roll/deep breath and settles back to her book. There will be no violence on this train today.

Overheard: MBTA Car, Inbound, Ashmont to Alewife, 8:20 AM

August 30, 2010

It’s really early. And everyone’s just trying to read their book, or make faces at that free newspaper with the daily insane animal story, or listen to their iPod while making plans to kill their husband and blame it on a faulty garage door opener. And unfortunately for those people, I am on this T car. Because whenever I ride the T, something annoying happens in the form of Today’s Crazy.

Two youths board the car, standing in the direct middle of the aisle, allowing the motion of the car to cause them to stumble in circles while baying loudly at each other using foul language.  They refuse to hold on to the poles, instead choosing to jostle the people around them. Are they drunk? No. High? Maybe. The guy’s jeans are dirty on the front, I note with disdain. It looks like Pig Pen mistook him for Santa. The girl is tall, wearing a short grey jersey dress with a small leather jacket over it.  She is screaming obscenities. I don’t mean she’s angry. In fact, this seems like an average day for her…boarding the train to engage in a conversation at a decibel level so high that seagulls are exploding.  I have a mouth like a Times Square strumpet but no one should be dropping fuck bombs at this time of morning when people are barely awake. No one needs this twat alarm clock.

All I can think of is C7 on the snack machine at the office. C7 is my morning breakfast of mini-choco chip cookies.  Yes, I have the code memorized. All I can think of is those cookies and how I can’t concentrate on my book because two people are screaming at each other and making everyone uncomfortable. They are ruining this morning’s anticipation of C7 for me.

I always have the fear that a T Crazy will catch one of my quick angry glances at them, and turn their nutty on me. And because I have no happy medium when it comes to confrontation, I will turn Bernard Goetz 2010 and start swinging my canvas bag at them and screaming “SHUT UP! DIE! SHUT UP! DIE!” and I know it won’t end well because the water bottle and iPhone charger in my bag aren’t enough to render anyone unconscious. Which is why I hope the T Crazies of the Moment do not note that I’m stealing quick volcanic glares at them.

Oh, you probably want to know what they said. It was a looonnngggg, screamed conversation but here are some AMAZING snippets:

On Tiana, and how she’s holding up people’s lives:

“Tiana’s all up on my DICK, man. I gotta get to FUCKING WORK!”

(Note: The GIRL unveiled this jewel. And at the emphasis on “dick,” about seven people including me looked up, widened their eyes, and looked back down. Praying for her death. And Tiana’s. We all blamed Tiana. And wished that the girl’s work was land mine detection by jogging in Croatia. )

What happens when you tell someone their cousin was “rolling up on em'” and you are mistaken?:

“Muthafucka, don’t you TELL ME what my cousin’s bout! I know my MOTHAFUCKIN COUSIN!”

Sometimes signals get crossed, and people’s feelings are hurt:

“WHY YOU GETTIN’ MAD? HUH? HUH? YOU GETTIN’ ON MY NERVES, NOW!”

When a sista doesn’t take care of her eyebrow situation:

“SHE LOOK LIKE SHE JUST CAME FROM BIGFOOT’S FUNERAL! DAMN!”

(Ed. note – I don’t get that one. Were they messing with people’s eyebrows at the funeral? If you go to a sasquatch funeral, is there some sort of reverse spa situation in which they bushy up your brow? Is this some sort of tribute to Bigfoot? His last wish, perhaps?)

Signals uncross, and flirtation takes place (and the cousin is downgraded from thug to thyroid issue sufferer):

“AW, YOU FUNNY NOW! YOU FUNNY NOW! CLOWIN’ ON ME! SHIT, IT’S MY STOP. YOU KNOW MY COUSIN BIG AS SHIT NOW!”

This screaming (of which I have only given you but a sip) took place in an otherwise silent T car. There was no need to get on the car and start screaming. He could have heard you if spoke in a normal tone.

For the second half, the ignorants sat on either side of a young girl and screamed over her head at each other. The girl kept looking for the emergency straight razor to drag across her wrist. I felt for her. I wanted to hold her as she wept on my shoulder. I know, dear, I know. They are gone now. The dirty lap man and the dumpster-mouthed woman are gone.  Ooo, child, things are gonna get easier.

In conclusion, I hate people.

Overheard: In The Gym Parking Lot

July 20, 2009

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The two things that people seem to enjoy checking out the most (besides posts about LeeAnn Rimes‘ gay husband Dean Sheremet, seriously, those posts have the most hits out of any…I’m at a loss) on this blog are Unqualified and Animated Arguments With The Boyfriend. People love watching cute little animated re-enactments of things. So I thought I would start another feature in which I animate something. Overheard will be a animated representations (via the awesome site Xtra Normal) of amusing scenes that I am privy to in my day-to-day existence. Enjoy.

True story. This was overheard in the gym parking lot today. Two black gentlemen were preparing to enter, and one was locking up his car.

p.s. I fully realize that your first reaction to this post might be “that bitch went to a gym?”.

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