Why does every public outing have to be so incredibly stressful?
Why are there not yet systems for buying things in person without having to have any kind of communication with another human. Is it that too much to ask?
I realise a lot of my posts start off with me asking questions, I’m not sure I’ve ever found any answers. This, however, is more an exercise in thinking aloud than a search for solutions.
It hasn’t yet been an issue, but I’ve often wondered what I would do were I non-verbal in a public setting which required me to speak; shopping for instance. I’ve fumbled through a few encounters with simple nods or shakes of the head but that doesn’t cut it for anything more elaborate.
Shopping centres, on the whole, are incredibly loud, bright and just generally sensorily offensive. I try to get round that by having my headphones in constantly, but cashiers and service assistants tend not to like this for some reason.
I went to buy a case for my new phone (Yay! Change) at a local, rather large shopping centre. I somehow managed to stumble, alone I might add, through this vast expanse of NT’s just waiting to pick up on the slightest social misstep, to a well established phone store. The staff there, it would seem, feel wholly inedequate if every customer is not personally greeted and directed on their merry way, irrelevant of any eye-contact avoidance or headphones. Here’s me being forced into an entirely non-consensual conversation about the purpose of my visit, only to be offered a case not suited and twice the price. (Shop assistants trying to sell the more expensive products, who’d have thought it?) They then proceeded to ignore any words I produced, which clearly were in a foreign language, to point me in the direction of their wall display: the exact place I was heading before I was so rudely interrupted. After an approximate 0.2 milliseconds finding the case I actually wanted there then followed a rather tense and awkward exchange regarding my receipt.
Outside of work expenses, receipts seem to be an item that is decided upon almost totally arbitrarily dependant on the time of day or phase of the moon.
In this instance I opted for one, expecting the usual £5 note sized piece of paper with far too much information on it. Instead what happened was further awkwardness as this poor assistant worked out how to use their computer, disappeared for what I can only assume was an entire century, to then return with an A4 piece of paper that contained one line of text.
Save the trees people.
I guess what I’m fumbling around in far too much detail is that I’d like it to be socially appropriate for me to leave my headphones in and not be accosted. It’d be even better if that entire exchange could’ve been typed out by me on this swanky new phone that somehow looks identical to my old one (Yay! Consistency)
Maybe this is all just me overthinking, as I’ve been known to do once or twice.
Maybe it is socially appropriate for those of us that struggle to have text conversations with shop assistants, who knows? I’m probably not going to try it out any time soon.
Did you know I have anxiety?