Are you looking at me?

I wasn’t feeling well today, but I still need coffee. So I went down to Zeitgeist with iPad in tow and sipped my tall americano as I poked out a worksheet on definite articles.

A lady with a sunhat and a paper copy of the Stranger (guh, paper) sits two tables away from me. After a while I realize she’s staring at me. I look up to check.

Yes, staring directly at me.

I smile and nod and she keeps staring so I put my head down and keep working.

“I need one of those pens,” she tells me. She’s talking about the stylus I’m using. I tell her it’s a microfiber tip, and it’s a screaming deal at 3 for $7.77 on Amazon.

“Tell me what it’s called?” she asked.

“It’s by the Friendly Swede,” I offer.

“Oh,” she says, “I’m Swedish.”

“… Are you friendly?” Sorry, kids, that’s all I got.

Now is the part where it gets alarming.

“I like to think I’m friendly,” she says, “Seattle is a hard place to get to know people.” She is, of course, referring to the Seattle Freeze, which is real.

“Yes,” I agree. It is indeed a difficult place to get to know people. You can’t just go around insinuating passive aggressively that you want friends and expect people to become your friends. You have to actually make an effort, which out-of-towners hate.

“Maybe that will improve,” she says hopefully, “as more people move here.”

“Maybe so,” I say, as I reach for my panic button. Soon all that I hear is the sound of mechanical motors moving little gears, and titanium clamping securely against titanium as my Seattle Freeze armor deploys automatically from this psychotic person who wants people to move here and change our culture… a person who wants to TALK to me about said atrocity.

I think she feels a chill, because she looks down and starts reading her paper Stranger (guh, paper).

My Seattle Freeze armor has completely sealed me in, and the solid, crystal ice barrier is gleaming and shimmering gloriously around me.

A few minutes later I was finished with my worksheet, so I packed up and hovered my ice fortress out of there, an invulnerable frozen Colossus gliding heroically over the horizon into the sunset.

Hint: if you want to get to know us, you don’t start by insulting us. If you want to find emotional support among other non-Seattlites.. well, then I’m not your guy, am I.

4 thoughts on “Are you looking at me?

  1. Bwaaa ha ha ha! I have never heard of the “Seattle Freeze”. In Nebraska, we don’t know a stranger. We are friendly to everyone. I don’t think you can visit Nebraska without finding new friends at every turn you make.


    • Hi Vikianderson, Seattle people are friendly; I was totally friendly to this lady, was chatting happily to her about my stylus. And then she expressed her desire to culturally colonize my hometown, replacing the population of locals until our culture becomes irrelevant. I think she didn’t have any idea how horribly offensive she was. Anyway, I didn’t yell at her or abuse her, I just said, “maybe so,” and got back to my worksheet, which is what I was doing before she started eyeballing me.


    • Thanks DJ. I lead with warm and fuzzy, even though she was leading with psychotic stare and crazylady “I need one of those pens.” I only deployed the Freeze after she proved herself to be horribly offensive.


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