A couple of days ago I exercised such iron self-control you’d be amazed. Despite tremendous temptation, I acted like a normal well-mannered adult, which we all know is a wholly unnatural state for me.
When you exert that much pressure, the shit’s gotta leak out somewhere. So since I prevented myself from blurting offensive and/or potentially incriminating comments in front of two people on Monday, I now find myself writing them here for all to see. Go figure.
Here’s what happened:
Hubby and I were shopping for outdoor equipment: Bear spray and bear bangers, and we each wanted a new camping knife. (And I didn’t even think of making a joke about banging bears until now. Aren’t you proud of me?)
If you’re not familiar with these products, bear bangers make a sound like a gunshot to frighten away a bear, and bear spray is hot pepper spray you carry in case of a bear attack. Theoretically, you spray it in the bear’s face and the horrible burning sensation makes him run away, or at least distracts him so you can escape. In actual fact, it probably just pisses him off and gives him a taste for jalapeno human, but I digress.
In Canada you have to provide identification to buy bear spray. It’s been so long since we bought any, we didn’t realize they now track the canisters and record their serial number along with your ID. When the clerk explained that, I almost said, “Jeez, we’d better use our old canisters when we commit our next crime.” The sentence was fully formed in my brain and halfway out my mouth before I stifled myself.
It’s never a good idea to make that kind of joke in front of someone who’s recording your name to give to the police.
Restraining that comment wasn’t exactly a selfless act, but my other tongue-biting episode took place solely because I’m nice. And polite. And modest. Prudish, even. (Okay, also full of shit.)
Anyway, I wanted a new knife. I have a lovely old Mora blade I’ve used for years, but it doesn’t have a finger guard and its wooden handle gets dangerously slippery when it’s wet. (No, I’m not going to say anything about wrapping my fingers around wet slippery wood, either. See? Restraint.)
I was looking for a half-serrated Ka-Bar type, but the regular sporting-goods stores only seemed to carry five-inch blades in that style. My Mora is six, and that’s what I wanted. So I approached the guy behind the counter and explained my problem.
I admit I was inwardly snickering about walking up to a guy and demanding more inches, but I managed to squelch my inner adolescent and I didn’t even crack a smile.
But it nearly killed me when he whipped out a measuring tape and started measuring the blades even though I’d already told him they were only five inches. It was all I could do not to say, “I’m a woman. Trust me, I know the difference between five and six inches.”
That was rapidly followed by the need to tell him, “It doesn’t matter how many ways you measure it, it’s still not big enough”, along with the almost irresistible urge to hold my fingers a couple of inches apart and say, “You’re a guy. Of course you think this is six inches.”
But I didn’t say any of those things. Steam came out my ears and my brain threatened to implode under the pressure, but I bit my tongue. Hard.
How do you like my new tongue piercing? I’m thinking a silver stud would be attractive…