Mrs. Hillbilly Mom is having issues with her personal space. The lack of it. What is wrong with people who can't respect our bubble, as some of my students call it? Are they societal simpletons? Do they not understand the concept of personal space? Or do they understand, and choose to ignore it? How much huffing and gazing to kill will it take to set these too-closers straight?
Too-Closer #1 inched his way under my armpit in The Devil's Playground. Which was quite uncomfortable, him being a teenager taller than my armpit. He weaseled his way against my left side as I was trying to elbow enough room to scan my debit card and enter the PIN. The PIN which I'm sure he can recite, having had his nosey nose all up in my business during my transaction. The adult who brought him should have put him on a child leash. There's an idea. I can start a company that manufactures teen-leashes, all tricked out with pointy metal studs and other metallica to match their piercings. Consider that patent pending.
Too-Closer #2 stalked The Pony and me at the 11:30 a.m. showing of Legend of the Guardians. They were old enough to know better. And old enough not to have been at a showing of Legend of the Guardians. It's an animated kid movie about anthropomorphic owls, by cracky! What's the deal with septuagenarians showing up with no great-grandkids in tow? The Pony and I arrived 30 minutes before showtime, because our deal with The Devil was brief today. We sat in the next-to-back row, where there are two rows of four chairs together. Not the back row, mind you, because somebody would then sit in front of us and block The Pony's view. People like those seats. Nobody demands to crawl across you to get to a mere two untaken seats.
The Septas rolled in at 11:25. We were already in the midst of commercials. Keep in mind that we were the only four people in the theater. The Septas sat in the row of four seats behind us. C'mon. They had to know that the movie was not going to be crowded. They had their pick of every single row in that theater besides one. And they chose to sit directly behind The Pony and me. We were reading, Pony on his Kindle, I on a paperback. Septa Dude right away began asking Septa Gal if she could see. It's not like she was a Roloff. She was behind The Pony. She said she could see OK. Septa Dude wouldn't give it a rest. He was like one of those controlling husbands who never let their wives out of their sight. After about five minutes of questioning her vision, Septa Dude made her agree to move to another row. The one on the back right side of the theater. All along, I had the feeling that he felt they should have our seats, and that we should volunteer to move. Too bad, so sad. Mrs. Hillbilly Mom don't play that.
Rounding out today's triumvirate of Too-Closers was #3. He appeared in a white car, and passed in front of me as I waited at a stop sign to pull out onto an outer road to get to my mom's house after the movie. No big deal. He had the right-of-way. The speed limit was 35. It's not like I peeled out from that stop sign as if T-Hoe was a funny-car champion. I was making a left turn. It was slow. But Too-Closer #3 pulled onto the shoulder of the road. I don't know what that was all about. I wasn't even near him. I had time to veer around him, giving him extra room in case he was going to throw open his door and vomit, or take off a jacket, get a beverage from a cooler on the back seat. But he immediately pulled onto the road to follow me. What's the deal?
Too-Closer #3 did not exactly tailgate me. But he maintained the same speed as I: 35 mph. So he wasn't just doing me a favor in letting a faster driver go around. The weirdest part is, when I got in the left-turn lane at the next light, to go down a strip of divided highway to my mom's house, Too-Closer #3 got in the left turn lane behind me. And when the light turned green, he didn't make a left! He went straight across. From the left-turn lane. It was downright creepy.
I need my space. I need it now. And all day, every day. To borrow a line from Sandra Bullock in 28 Days, "If it is not too much to ask, will you all just back the f*** off?"