So here I am in sunny Germany, doing another German course. I seem to remember that one of my more recent flurries of activity on this blog came when I did my first course in 2009 - I guess when you're in a strange city learning verbs and tenses, a man will turn to his old blog for a diversion. I can't imagine that there's many people that will read this now given that I post much more regularly on my professional website, but this won't go anywhere near to approaching the sort of subject material that I write about on there, so here I am.
I have been a little dismayed over the past few days with the behaviour of a few members of the fairer sex. That's not to say that I'm in any way weeping into my dacquiri about it, but it's fair to say that I'm annoyed - and more particularly, annoyed in principle, which is often the sort of annoyed that gets me writing stuff.
I've been doing this course of mine, and it's been going quite well. The people are nice, the verbs and tenses have been learning themselves, I'm making a few professional contacts, the beer and the food and the coffee are good. Hooray for me. As ever with Goethe Institut courses, there are plenty of opportunities to socialise - structured activities, city trips, parties, that sort of thing. It's been a bit of fun. I had fallen in with a group from a mixture of my class and the class above me too - largely because they all live in the same Wohnung-dormitory thing.
There's a pretty girl amongst our group who I'd been seeing quite a lot of. Just my type. Petite, smart, attractive, interesting, a little bit exotic (she's Turkish) mid-ish twenties. We'd been having good chats about all sorts of things, eating lunch in the canteen, going to the odd museum, that sort of thing. Always in our small-ish group though, and never alone. The thought did cross my mind that maybe that was by design on her part, but it wasn't like I'd really gone out of my way to hammer the point home - my kamikaze days are behind me, thank God. I did take a slightly more direct approach the other day though - I was planning on going into town for a sandwich and a coffee, and on a whim I asked her if she wanted to come. She knew what I was about, and graciously declined. We chatted a bit more, said our goodbyes and that was that - shrug shoulders, oh well, better luck next time with someone else. I gave her some space for the next day or so, too - a smile and a nod here and there but not much else, one doesn't want to be too over-bearing in these situations.
As far as I could tell, I hadn't done much wrong. Liked the girl, got to know the girl, asked her out, got rebuffed, no big deal, move on. In a way I was pleased to have the question answered as I sometimes am in these situations - you don't want to die wondering.
But no. Apparently I DID do something wrong. The next time I spoke to her I was treated with complete and utter contempt - by her and one of her friends. There's a thing that women do when they want you to get out of their face, and it usually manifests in treating you like you're some sort of hell-bent psychopathic rapist stalker with bad breath and B.O. - and I got all of that and more. She even turned tail and fled the other day when she walked into a café and found me in it, as though I couldn't be trusted not to flash her or something. What this has now resulted in is that I have essentially been ejected from our little group as well, on account of the fact that her and Bitchy Friend make up about thirty percent of it.
But seriously - what the fuck? Why is this necessary? Since when is asking someone out for a sandwich a sex crime? Why the childishness and closing of ranks? Why the little power games and bitchiness? I'm a perfectly reasonable human being, and through the above bitter experience I've learnt the right and wrong way to handle these situations. Surely if anyone is to feel scorned and slighted it's me anyway - isn't it? Don't get me wrong, it would be pretty stupid for me to take offence at being turned down over something like this, but if anyone's pride has been hurt here, surely it's mine? Apparently not.
The thing is that this is nothing new for me. Going right back to when I was a spotty teenager through early adulthood and beyond, this has been a recurring theme. Regardless of whether or not I've taken rejection well or not there is the recurring pattern of ..... general unpleasantness being aimed in my direction whenever I've gone for a target and missed. It hasn't happened EVERY time mind you, but when it has it has always smacked of "I've got something over you and now I'm going to go out of my way to make you feel small just because I can."
What has happened to compound the situation since is that after several days of being rude she has decided to come back to Planet Earth and actually acknowledge my presence. Which, I have to say, is ALSO a recurring theme. "Sorry little man, you needed your time in purgatory. It was for your own good. Now the time has come for me to bring you back to the fold. You may speak to me again - only on my terms though, of course." The vanity, the self-centredness, the childishness, the bare-faced sense of entitlement - when you break it down it really does beggar belief. This has happened to me many times in the past too, with or without the romantic ovetures, and quite often things have gone backwards and forwards like this for months - years even, whilst I, playing the fool and the ill-advised gentleman and appeaser have swallowed it like some sort of grinning idiot. My entire management career was conducted like this.
Well bollocks to it, it's not happening this time. She can go fuck herself in chocolate - her and her bitchy mate. Part of me thinks that I should be the Bigger Person and just run with it, but I'm not one for making racks for my own back anymore. I fail to see why I should deliberately choose to spend time with people who are rude and manipulative. The irony of this of course is that she will almost certainly now decide that I'm the dickhead in this situation because I'm ignoring her. I can't imagine she'll even for one solitary second consider whether her behaviour as been in any way lacking. Whatever - I've thought my thoughts and written them down, now I couldn't care less.
Women! You can't live with them - you can't live with them. And other variations on that theme.