Saturday, January 27, 2007

Ironically Antisocial

My husband is one of the friendliest guys you will ever meet. He wouldn't dream of being rude to anyone, and he handles normal conversation well, when required. That's just the kicker, though; when required. He will go to great lengths to avoid talking to people he doesn't know. I am exactly the opposite. Anytime we have a problem, I'm all for calling up the customer service number and "speaking to a representative". In fact, I will wait through inordinately long automated answering systems until I find out what number I need to push to catch a real, honest-to-goodness, blood-flowing, heart-pumping human being. My darling spouse, on the other hand, goes first to the internet, that great anonymous information beast. Then he'll go through the automated system, then, if all else fails. . .he asks me to call a person. We're talking even down to shopping and ordering pizza. And he's a very intelligent, normal human being. (Okay, as normal as anyone is)

This has led to a few frustrating experiences in our usually placid marriage. For instance, hubby calls from the store.
Him: I can't find that kind of pasta you wanted.
Me: Did you ask anyone?
Him: No
Me: Well, ask someone where it is. Then you'll know.
Him: If they had it, I would've found it.
Me: I don't think we can just take that as a given, Love.
Him: I'm not asking
Me: Fine, don't. Just wander around aimlessly like a moron when you know very well that a little conversation would give you exactly the information you needed, Mr. Efficient.

Ok, so it's not always that bad. This reluctance to meet strangers has led to another little "discussion" that we occasionally have. Whenever he goes on a business trip, he refuses to check baggage. He says he doesn't have to talk to anyone if he just uses his internet-purchased ticket and takes no extra luggage. He fits all his clothes, toiletries, entertainment, shoes etc. in his carry-on, which is a backpack from his college days. I just can't stand this. "How can you possibly get everything you need into that bag", I plead. He insists he's fine. "How can your clothes possibly look professional enough for a business meeting" This is what he says, no kidding. "I roll them up really tightly, so there are no wrinkles." AARRGGHHH!!! Ok, I'm over it. He's a grown man. He can do what he wants.

Here's the incredible irony of it all. He's going to these business meetings to learn how to interact with people in a business setting; how to lead groups of people and talk with them and get them to do what you need. It's all I can do not to just crack up.

7 comments:

Bramblerose said...

I am the same way as your dh. My dh is just like you. Opposites attract.

Attolia said...

That's very much like me too. I think a lot of it stems from a desire to not bother people. And the internet is such a lovely tool for introverts...I'm so glad I was born in a time when such things exist. :)

SUNNYBROOK said...

This post of yours had me ROFL!

I think I'm somewhere in the middle here. I like being sociable, but I like being self-informed, so I tend to seek out answers on the internet first. Can't stand most of those automated answering systems, though. Usually, by the time I call them, I've already browsed their website and been unable to find the answer, so I'm at the point I need a real person to clarify something for me.

Eshtemoa said...

I guess I am somewhere in the middle as well. Checking luggage at the airport - no problem - except for the long lines. Actually, anything that involves talking to one or two people is pretty much of a breeze for me and I don't mind and enjoy it greatly most of the time unless the conversation is meaningless. Talking to three or more people turns me into a jellyfish, especially in a public setting. Talking on the phone - one of my most shunned activities to be done only when absolutely necessary, or unless it is someone I know VERY well. Talking online - no problem. About your hubby, hey, maybe that is why they are sending him to those trainings. I would LOVE to go to that kind of workshop.

Babystepper said...

Actually, he does a great job at work with communication. He's going to those classes so he'll have some highfalutin' business title and be all official.

Hysterical!

scribbit said...

Funny how opposites attract!

Qtpies7 said...

my dh used to shut himself in our room if someone came to the door unexpectedly! He hated even ordering from the drive thru! He wouldn't do it unless we had all the orders written down. He's getting better, he does customer service, LOL. He has to talk to people on the phone all day!