|LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Thanks to "Star Trek," a show with its sight set steadfastly on the future, I have come to appreciate the richness and the complexity of the past. Recently I did two Star Trek events that literally transported me into a deeper appreciation of the vast history of human civilization. One was a Star Trek cruise from Los Angeles down the coast of Mexico, sailing through the Panama Canal and across the Caribbean to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The other was a gigantic Star Trek convention in Berlin, Germany.|
A cruise may not immediately seem like a journey into times gone by. It's fun, feasting and frolicking as one sails to exotic ports. And a Star Trek cruise is indeed all that. But this one, arranged by Cruise Trek of Agoura Hills, California, was also like a time machine that took me to three different centuries in our past.
One of our ports of call was a sleepy Guatemalan harbor called Puerto Quetzal. A 90-minute jet plane ride away, hidden deep in the dense jungle growth of centuries, is the ruins of the great Mayan civilization of Tikal. I wanted to visit it. But when we boarded our ship, the S.S. Veendam, in Los Angeles, we discovered that this off-ship tour was sold out! It was such a popular tour that the eager beavers had faxed in their reservation requests early and completely bought up all available seats on the jet to the jungle airport. At the welcome reception on board, actor Cecily Adams made an impassioned plea for more people to request the tour so that another plane might be chartered. I was already on the waiting list.
Happily, there were many others who wanted to view the ruins of Tikal and we got the required number to hire another plane. But this one was not a jet. To be charitable, it was a plane that amply qualified to be in a Guatemalan antique museum. But we aren't in Puerto Quetzal every other weekend and if this was our only way to get to Tikal, so be it. We wanted to experience the great Mayan ruins.
We boarded the old plane, our desire to go to Tikal greater than our confidence in the aged aircraft to get us there. As we climbed to cruising altitude, we wondered if there might be an omen in the music that wafted softly from the sound system. It was the theme from "Titanic." After a two-hour test of our nerves, we landed at the jungle airport a bit frazzled but intact and grateful.
Tikal blew away all apprehensions over that flight. It was astounding. Built some 2,500 years ago, central Tikal covers about 6 miles. We were told that there are over 3,000 structures --- temples, palaces, shrines, plazas both large and small, terraces, residences and ball courts all surrounded by a network of causeways. With our limited time, we would be able to see only the highlights.
Looming up out of the tangle of dense jungle growth, awe inspiring in its majesty, stood the ruins of four temple structures. Their bases were not pyramids but steeply slanted stepped shafts that soared up to a terrace in the sky. Imposingly ensconced on top were the ornately carved stone temples of the Mayan high priests. Climbing to the top was, literally, a breath-taking work out. Many in our group didn't even attempt it. Cecily Adams, fit athlete that she is, made it to the top. The view from that spectacular vantage was as breathtaking as the climb. Below was the great central plaza where the ritual ceremonies were held. Across the way were the other temple structures. And surrounding us all was the jungle that had claimed these awesome edifices when the Mayan nation mysteriously vanished long before the coming of the conquistadores. It boggled the mind to realize that this amazing civilization was built without the use of the wheel.
A delicious native lunch was prepared for us at a jungle compound. We could have roamed among the ruins for the rest of the day. But our guide rushed us on. We had to return to the plane, he told us, so that we could take off by three o'clock in order to land at the Puerto Quetzal landing strip while there still was daylight. The reason for the urgency being that the Puerto Quetzal airstrip had no lights for night landings.
We arrived back at the plane with time to spare. But once we were strapped into our seats, the pilot and co-pilot began inspecting the bottom of the ancient instrument panel with flashlights. Then a parade of people in sweat-stained work clothes began shambling up to the cockpit. They peered and tinkered and whispered cryptically among themselves. After a tense half-hour sitting in the tropical heat of an unventilated old plane, we were asked to return to the terminal building. I've never liked the word "terminal" associated with anything to do with flying, but now it was more unnerving than ever.
Riddled with apprehension, we filed back. Some headed straight for the bar and some good Guatemalan beer. Cecily, I discovered, is a woman with a remarkably low threshold of hysteria. She immediately placed a long distance call to her husband Jim back in Los Angeles and began a tear choked "I've always loved you and always will - forever and ever -- " farewell call. I felt more for the poor, hapless man than for Cecily.
Another suspenseful half hour later, a sweaty man came out to tell us that our plane cannot fly but that three small replacement planes were flying out from Guatemala City to take us back to Puerto Quetzal. If Cecily had an ounce of control left, that announcement blew it away. With panic flashing in her eyes, she began pounding on the glass wall of the waiting room. The terminal manager came out and rushed her into his office where she remained for the rest of our tension filled wait. The rest of us merely sat on pins and needles and waited. We had already lost more than an hour of precious daylight. The beer flowed freely as the Guatemalan sun slowly sank toward the jungle tree line.
It was twilight when the first plane arrived. Immediately, a semblance of a queue formed at the door. Through the plate glass window, we saw Cecily being hustled on board the first plane. The door was opened and people began to be let through, slowly and not too methodically, one after the other. Just three people before me, the first plane reached capacity. I didn't make it on to that plane. In a sense, I was kind of glad. When the passengers of one plane get divided up into three small planes, the risks are tripled. And I had an uneasy premonition about the one carrying Cecily.
The second plane landed just as the first was taxiing away. It was old and smaller but it didn't look as decrepit as the big one that brought us here. We boarded quickly and strapped ourselves in as rapidly as we could. But it was already dark as we began our taxi down the primitive runway. Everyone sat silently. But in the tense stillness, I sensed the one question screaming in everyone's mind. How is this plane going to land on an airstrip that has no lights?
The plane strained and heaved trying to lift itself off the runway. It coughed and gasped. I pulled up on my armrest hoping it would help. Just as the plane reached the end of the cracked concrete strip, it lifted off. It continued pulling and flexing, strenuously trying to avoid the treetops. It shuddered, recovered, then trembled wildly. Finally and thankfully, it reached its allowed flying altitude. The plane continued trembling as it droned into the darkened night sky.
Among the many activities on the cruise ship, I had been taking the yoga exercise class. The idea was to achieve inner peace by bringing one's mind and body into harmony with one's environment. If ever I needed peace and harmony with my surrounding, now was it. I closed my eyes and slowly began breathing in and out. I relaxed my mind and tried to become one with the droning, shivering world surrounding me. All of a sudden, that world turned electric white! Everything became a blinding, shocking, blazing whiteness. Was this it? Is this the way it happens? Was this the end? I was petrified. Then just as shockingly, everything turned back to as it had been. I saw the dark outlines of the passengers' heads ahead of me. The heads turned to each other in startled puzzlement. I realized then, that we had just experienced a silent lightening. Suddenly, it happened again. Another flash. An instantaneous splash of blue-white electricity that was gone as quickly as it came. We were flying through a tropical-lightening storm. A few more silent flashes and we were again flying through the ominously unchanging black sky.
After about an hour, I noticed a sprinkle of lights down in the blackness of the landscape below. Then, I noticed a river of moving lights snaking in the darkness. It looked like a road with automobiles. That must be Guatemala City, I thought. It was supposed to be the biggest city in the country and the capital. But it looked merely like a few dots and a squiggle of light. A few moments later, the landscape returned to black again.
The tension began to intensify as we sensed the plane beginning the descent into the darkness below. How is the pilot going to manage the landing without any lights to guide him? Our imaginations went wild as we girded ourselves for a rough landing. Our breaths held tight as the plane descended lower and lower. It was all blackness below. Then, far off in the distance, we saw something mystifying. We could make out what looked like a double row of lights. What was this? We were told that Puerto Quetzal had no landing lights. As we descended lower, we could surely see two distinct rows of lights beckoning us in the dark. Our pilot headed straight for it. Thank god, they had lights after all, we thought. It wasn't until we were almost about to touch down that we noticed that the lights were, in fact, a row of flickering flames. Standing next to the flaming lights, we saw the silhouettes of men carrying arms. With a hard, bone snapping bump, we touched down. We bounced and jounced down a potholed landing strip between the rows of flaming pots. When we finally came to a stop, we saw that the last part of the row of lights was made up of a line up of trucks and jeeps all parked with their headlights on. The Guatemalan authorities had risen to the challenge in a most creative way. They had improvised a primitive landing system by marshalling the Guatemalan armed forces to light fires in coconut shells lined up in a row together with the headlights of military vehicles. Necessity combined with human ingenuity had brought us back to earth, drained and weary but safe.
And dear Cecily. When we got back to the ship, we learned that the first thing she did when she got back on board was to place an international call to her anxiety-riddled husband back in Los Angeles. Their devotion to each other is genuinely touching. Such a contrast to the frazzled woman seated in front of me on the bus back to the ship. "When I get back to our cabin onboard," she groused, "my husband better not be asleep."
It was a nightmare trip back. But Tikal was worth it. In fact, the flight back seemed to underscore what we had seen at Tikal. The same original thinking and resourcefulness that produced the flaming night landing lights, had raised those amazing architectural splendors of Tikal without the use of the wheel. The power of human creativity and inventiveness is the one constant that defines civilizations through the ages. We would soon be experiencing another example of that from another age and another people --Americans with the Panama Canal.
The French tried for twenty years and failed to build a canal across the Isthmus of Panama connecting the Caribbean with the Pacific. Despite their success with the Suez Canal in Egypt, they could not overcome two great adversaries in Panama -- a devastating tropical disease and an awesome mountain range. The disease decimated whole armies of their workers and the earth from the towering mountainside kept caving down into their excavation.
With characteristic bravado, United States President Teddy Roosevelt took over when the French finally gave up. The first task for the Americans was to overcome the killer disease, which they found to be malaria. When they discovered that the carrier was mosquitoes, a massive eradication program was launched. All bodies of water were either drained or disinfected. Then a new, sanitary village was built to house the workers.
The great challenge then became to conquer the formidable barrier mountain range of the Continental Divide. The solution the engineers came up with was ingenious. Rather than digging a cut into the daunting obstacle, their idea instead was to create a lake rising above the mountain range, then lifting the ships up and over the mountain. The solution was as brilliant as the engineering job would be formidable. First, a lake in the sky had to be constructed. Then, a series of locks had to be built to raise the ships up to the man-made lake. Then another set of locks on the opposite side would lower the ships back down to sea level. It was a mind-boggling project. But the Americans did it. The Panama Canal took ten grueling years to build but in August of 1914, the first ship made the virgin crossing. Since then, over 800,000 ships have gone through the waterway. Our passage in October of 1999 was to be one of the last transits under American administration. At midnight, December 31, 1999, the canal is to be handed over to the Panamanian government. President Jimmy Carter, who signed the treaty in 1977, will represent the U.S. at the ceremony. There was a sense of history for all of us on board the S.S. Veendam as we sailed toward our crossing.
We got up bright and early in the morning and crowded onto the decks and other good vantage points. I found a comfortable seat by a panoramic picture window in the Crow's Nest, the topmost cocktail lounge in the ship. In the pale light of dawn, I could see the metropolitan skyline of Panama City in the distant northeastern horizon. We were munching on a breakfast of Panama rolls and coffee by the time we sailed under the massive steel girders of the Bridge of the Americas guarding the entrance to the canal.
Promptly at 7:30 a.m., we entered the first of a series of locks, this one called Miraflore Locks. The water came churning in with massive force as the ship slowly rose up. I marveled at the colossal power of water. Forty-five minutes later, we were sailing out and onto the first of the stepped lakes, Miraflore Lake. Soon we entered the next series of locks, the Pedro Miguel Locks. These locks raised our vessel up to the top level of the system and a great waterway called the Gaillard Cut. This was the part that was the greatest challenge to the builders of the canal - the cut through the rugged mountain range of the Continental Divide. About 8 miles long, it was carved through rock and shale. It was here that the principal excavation was required and here that those devastating slides occurred during construction.
I stepped outside to the deck and gazed out at the semi jungle landscape on each side of the great waterway. The dense tropical air instantly wrapped around me in a sultry embrace. It was awe inspiring to imagine men just a century ago, struggling against this brutal heat, disease and the savagery of the jungle to carve out this massive system of waterways. I marveled at the sheer ingenuity of the engineers. The Panama Canal is a triumph of human will, creativity and determination. It is as incredible an achievement as that of the Mayans centuries ago.
It was lunchtime when we sailed out onto the huge man-made body of water, Gatun Lake, and I was hungry. We had a few hours to go before we would be entering the downhill set of locks. I decided to go down for lunch. The view of the lake from the air-conditioned comfort of the ship's dining room was superb. As I dined on an exquisite lunch of poached sole with baby asparagus, I couldn't help but appreciate the almost surreal world that we inhabited. Certainly, it would have been science fiction to those who had struggled so valiantly to make this fantastical existence so comfortably real for us. Ah, the wondrous rewards of man's ingenuity.
Promptly at 2 p.m., we entered the Gatun Locks, the system lowering our ship down to sea level on the Caribbean side. By sunset, we were again out on the high seas. Our historic 9-hour transit across the Panama Canal was over. On our way back to Ft. Lauderdale, we enjoyed an all-too-brief stop at the charmingly preserved colonial city, Cartagena in Colombia. Like a dream, our two-week floating Star Trek convention was over. But the rich lessons from the past, experienced on this ocean trek, will remain with me for a long time.
Two days after returning from the cruise, I flew off to another Star Trek event -- this one, a land based convention. It, too, was a rich experience in a city dense with history -- the former, and once again, capital of Germany -- Berlin.
The convention, "Galileo 7-III," was gigantic. Over 2,500 fans gathered from throughout Europe and even a few from the U.S. Berlin was the place to be for Star Trek fans that weekend. The huge attendance, however, seemed to overwhelm the management of the convention. There were program delays, interminable lines and confusion. Yet, bless their hearts, the fans' enthusiasm remained unabated. The applause at each program event was thunderous. They reveled in the joy of sharing a weekend with kindred souls. And the convention raised 30 thousand German marks for charity as well.
But what truly impressed me was the city of Berlin itself. Here was a city, mindful of its history, vigorously building a future of unity. At a point in time when Europe is struggling to join eleven nations in an economic union, and when Germany is heroically working to bring together its two parts brutally separated for decades by a political wall, Berlin was building a world city. To accomplish this, the city had gathered some of the best architects from throughout the world. There were dazzling buildings designed by architects from the United States, Italy, Japan, Holland and, of course, Germany. Berlin was the shining symbol of a people confidant of their destiny and building for the next millenium. I sensed it in the spirit of the people. I felt it in the dynamism of the city. I saw it in the architecture of the new buildings.
The most intriguing building was the Jewish Museum by American architect David Leibeskind. The museum was to open in 2000 but I was privileged to tour the completed but empty building. The shape of the zinc-clad, zigzag structure could be seen as a bolt of lightning, a deconstructed Star of David or a sharp, metallic prison. The windows cut into this structure look like slashes, shards or fragments of shattered glass -- jagged reminders from history. The building is entered from an underground tunnel. The sense one gets on entering the slate paved entrance corridor is one of chilly disorientation. The walls are canted. The floor slightly ramped. Other corridors intersect at sharp angles. Nothing is parallel and regular. There are unexpected spatial voids suggesting the absence of a part of the community that once made up the people of Berlin. The design is at once sobering and stunning. But I couldn't help wondering how the building would work as an exhibition space for a museum. How do you hang things on these canted walls? How do you arrange artifact display cases in these oddly formed galleries? How do you keep the architecture from upstaging the exhibits themselves? My questions on the practicality, however, were overwhelmed by my awe of the virtuosity of the architect. The building alone makes the most unforgettable statement on the history of the Jewish people in Berlin. The new Jewish Museum is an eloquent architectural sculpture.
The most exhilarating new symbol in Berlin, for me, is the restored German parliament building, the Reichstag. The architect is Sir Norman Foster. His British citizenship is as symbolic, it seems to me, as his architectural brilliance is world renown. He took the bold, stony Baroque edifice of the Reichstag with all its turbulent history and sensitively restored the shell. In it, he designed a starkly contemporary legislative chamber and offices. The reminder of the past containing the vigor of a modern nation. His most inspired piece of the design however, is the glass dome that he placed right over the legislative chamber. The transparency of government could not have been more clearly communicated. Even more significantly, he designed a bank of elevators that whisk the public - with no admission charge - up to the roof of the building. The view of Berlin from this rooftop terrace is spectacular. From this terrace, Foster designed a spiral ramp in the dome allowing the people to traverse up to the top of the glass structure. From there, the people, not only of Germany but of the world, can look down directly on the lawmakers at work in the legislative chamber below. It is a potent statement about a people's democracy. As I was walking away from this inspiring building, I looked back again to get another perspective on it. Even from a distance, the Reichstag was alive with movement. There was the constant motion of people going up and down on the ramp in the glass dome over the heads of the politicians. What a powerful symbol for the future of democracy.
The gift of Star Trek's incredible popularity has provided me with these undreamed of opportunities to know this world. These experiences have given me a keen appreciation of the inseparable link between our past and our future. The barbarism of man's inhumanity to man reminds us of our terrible fallibility. The extraordinary achievements of our antecedents, their determination against sometimes awesome adversity, their great organizational competence and their creative genius inspires us to face the many challenges that we confront today. The solid launching pad of our future is the confidence we gain from the glorious attainments from history.
I am in awe of the hearing impaired. They don't allow anything to stop them. They live their lives to fullest in complete silence. We have a lot to learn from them.
I know I hear myself differently from how my voice actually sounds. So what do they hear? Is it even explainable? Let's ask...Redditor u/Turmixolt-teveszar wanted to hear from the deaf community about the language in their minds by asking... People who born deaf. How's your inner voice sound, or you just speak sign langue in your head?
One of my dreams is to learn sign language and when I do I want to authentically ask a deaf person about their thoughts. In my mind I sound sexy. On a recorder I sound like I sniff helium. It's weird. I wonder if they all hear themselves in sexy?
Good VibrationsFail Very Funny GIF by America's Funniest Home VideosGiphy
I asked my niece this. She said she had an inner voice but it was more a feeling than a voice. She described it as feeling the vibrations from loud music. When she had her surgery, and she heard voices for the first time, her inner voice adapted.
Me and Myself...
Not deaf, but my brother is. I remember when we were in our teens on a family vacation and I caught him signing to himself when he was bored. The first time I saw it I thought he was telling me something but I noticed he wasn't making eye contact and it made no sense, that is when I realized he was thinking to himself. After that, my family and I wouldn't watch when we noticed him doing it since we figured it wasn't fair to know what he was thinking at times when the same couldn't be said for him.
For the first 5 years of my life i was technically Deaf, i couldn't hear anything.
i remember thinking by closing my eyes and imagining the thing i wanted to think. so i would close my eyes and see my own imaginary world.
i can still do it but only in complete silence.
It's a trait i will forever hold but i'm not mad at it. it can be very helpful in some situations!
edit- a lot of people are wondering so i'll put it in the post, my eardrums collapsed during birth so when i was around 5 i had a surgery to "fix" them. not sure how they did it or if the doctors are still doing it on people but i'm grateful they did it to me.
A Neurologist named Oliver Sacks wrote a book called Seeing Voices. It was prescribed reading when I studied South African Sign Language. It might give some insights to your question.
In a related tangent, schizophrenia among deaf people is different than for hearing persons.
That's really interesting! Thank you. I remember reading about how auditory hallucinations with schizophrenia present differently depending on cultures. Some have negative critical voices, some have positive reassuring voices.
Hey Momtalking sign language GIFGiphy
My mom is profoundly deaf and I asked her this same question (totally not a stupid question!) She said she thinks in ASL. I have caught her signing to herself just like I sometimes talk to myself.
Fascinating. It's always amazing to learn and connect to another person who's experience is vastly different from our own. Once we realize, that when we all close our eyes, we're all left to our own thoughts, and that sound is universal.
HallucinationsBoomer Cant Hear GIF by MOST EXPENSIVESTGiphy
Not deaf but have studied psychology. People born deaf who also suffer from "auditory" hallucinations tend to not hear voices, they rather see floating hands speaking to them in sign language
I just remembered this fact because of your post...
Which part of the World
When I was young I asked a relative if she thought in English or Spanish because she was Spanish but had lived in England for a very long time, she couldn't understand what I was asking her and ended up getting very upset with me thinking that I was saying she couldn't speak English. She had no idea that people had an inner voice and I had no idea that some people didn't!
A deafie here - naturally we can't even describe what it sounds like as we don't really understand sound in the way you do. Maybe the basics like deep and high pitches but the difference between notes or octaves are something only understood through theory (i.e. reading about them).
We don't understand what makes a singer good but we for sure know how to tell if it's a good beat (provided it's loud enough to feel).
As such, speaking for myself here - my inner voice is more literally like thinking. A mixture of instinctual understanding and the words that describe the meaning I want to express.
I am a writer so words are quite colorful to me. They convey a myriad of imagination. I also am a philosopher so I admire and observe closely the metaphysics at play here.
Words can occasionally come out in English as it is best expressed through English. Some come out as sign language as there are sayings that only make sense in sign language. It's a blend of both as well as the raw emotional output that form my thoughts.
Also, there is the silence in between the thoughts. Depends on how much you pay attention I suppose.
Was born profoundly deaf. Wore hearing aids from 6 months old and replaced it with a cochlear implant at 15. I only have one, don't hear out of the other ear unless I opt to get another one for bilateral hearing. I was never taught how to sign. I was raised in a hearing world. People don't even realize I'm deaf most of the time until they see the implant.
I'm a bit of an outlier I guess. I'm not involved in the deaf community though I do have a couple of deaf friends who both talk and sign.
My voice sounds a lot cooler in my head than what it really is, probably the same for most people lol.
Deep Thoughttyra banks model GIF by Nyle DiMarcoGiphy
I recently learned that deaf people (at least in my country) often speak sign language as their first language and do not appreciate the assumption that sign language is just "a signed form of the country's language". The two languages usually have different grammars and morphology.
I think your question is very interesting OP, I just wanted to add to it, maybe this helps understand that not everyone has an acoustic language as their inner voice. I think it's hard for a hearing person to grasp this concept because language is so bound to sound for us but as Steven Pinker said: we shouldn't make the mistake of mixing up thought and language, most of our thoughts are more diffuse than language.
As writers we have to find ways to learn about something we know nothing about. I can't imagine as a deaf person trying to wonder what sound sounds like. But clearly people find a way. Through vibration, through dreams, sound finds a way.
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Making a real-world connection while dating is one thing, but doing it digitally brings an entirely new set of challenges.
Reddit user, u/SXC365, wanted to hear how you filter through the scrubs when they asked:
Crimsons Flags On Their Profile Header
The easiest red flag to spot across enemy lines is the one they fly at their highest point: the header of their dating profile. Sometimes, it's innocuous, hidden among some cute descriptors about what their obvious careers or hobbies are. But it's there, waiting to be ignored.
What Are You Trying To Hide?
Having literally no personal information about themselves besides their name, age, and a half dozen emojis. Please, ma'am/sir I would like to know who you are besides what your body looks like.
Likes: laughing, smiling, living <——— wtf yeah most people like the opposite..?
Likes: ask me 😏 Dislikes: ask me😏 Work: ask me😏
Advertising Something Else
'Follow me on instagram! /ic3cr3amnut69'
Alternatively, if their only written info is their Snapchat handle.
I know what you're about.
What's Underneath The Hood?
On the other hand, maybe it isn't so obvious at first glance. These types take a little more digging through their About section to truly understand what they're about.
And it's not good. Not good at all.
Setting Your (Dumb) Standards
When they have requirements like height, weight, and so on.
This is what I came here to say. Having preferences in terms of physical features and personality are one thing. We like what we like, and we dont like what we dont like. That's fair and fine, but to have a bulleted list of requirements in order to even speak to someone is crass and shallow.
"I'm A Bad Boy 4-Lyfe!" - This Person, Probably
When they're flipping off the camera. WHY? Why are you flipping me off?
FINALLY, someone says it! I can't get behind this, never could.
So many people go hiking or enjoy long walks. Why can't I just find someone who wants to spend their Sundays never getting dressed properly and watching TV all day?
Don't worry, as someone that is an enthusiastic, serious hiker, I've found that 80% of OLD profiles that claim to like hiking and long walks mean they like 3-5 mile walks occasionally.
For me that's disappointing, but you might be able to work with it.
Terrible Slogans To Keep An Eye Out For
Fortunately, the most obvious people to avoid online are those who have some sort of motto or lifestyle creedo, blazoned across their header right under their name. It won't be inspiration, motivational, or reasonable, but they'll think it is. Which is all the more reason for you to swipe left and get out before it's too late.
Take Your Time Back
"Don't waste my time"
This one, I just immediately swipe No, like theres your precious time bro
Wearing Their Awful Flag Proudly
Any time someone describes themselves as an "a--hole"
I think it's meant to be cute and cheeky but why would I wanna spend time with someone who freely admits they're a jerk?
Point Is, It's A Bad Quote
"If you can't handle me at my worst you don't deserve me at my best"
I remember a stand-up having a great response to this quote.
"This statement was made by Marylin Monroe, who killed herself. That, or she was murdered by the government. All we know is that at least one person really couldn't handle her at her worst."
Except there's no proof she ever said it.
Have your standards, have your prerequisites, and know what you want in a potential partner. Above all, never feel bad for declining someone because they feel the need to let you know their a d-ck.
Keep your dignity.
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Forming a connection with someone is a challenge.
And then there's these folks, who felt the need to call it quits over something that, honestly, didn't even matter that much.
Reddit user, u/High_Sleep3694, wanted to hear why you turned someone down when they asked:
Loud, Observable Traits
There are some traits people carry with them like a sad, old piece of rotting luggage, flopping it down on the table for everyone to gawk upon before the appetizers re served. You either are okay with it or, as these people quickly decided, bail out before it gets you.
That Would Irritate Any Decent Human
My mom stopped dating a guy because he unfastened and refastened the velcro on his shoes throughout an entire movie.
What A Dummy. Everyone Knows They're Limes.
When I found out that he thought lemons were unripened oranges
I Guess I Don't See A Big Problem With This One
All The Words In Every Text He Sent Were Capitalised. Trust Me, It Got ANNOYING.
He was awful in a trivia game we were playing. I mean, really bad, like it was his first day pretending to be a human on Earth and the aliens hadn't briefed him sufficiently.
The Littlest Things Can Turn You Off
Some stuff you can overlook, like maybe the way they hold their spoon and fork.
Other things are impossible to overlook, like...the way they hold their spoon and fork.
Goes both ways.
Her Name Is Anne, Guys.
Everytime I touched her, I would smell of egg. Like holding hands, egg.. Hug her, my shirt would smell of egg.
Strangest bit was, she didn't smell like that whatsoever.
Also, when I broke it off, the egg smelling stopped. So IDK.
Just. Let. Me. CHEW.
Every time I took a bite of food he asked me a question, after which he stared at me while I finished chewing.
The date went on like this for an hour, he had a supernatural sense of poor timing.
Wearing Your D-Bag Flag
He wore a Bluetooth piece in his ear. The constant blue light blinking from the side of his head was too much for me. Another guy would text "dame" instead of "damn". It wasn't a typo either, it was every time.
The Pettiest Of The Petty
Then there's these reasons, where the person must have been having a bad day or maybe they hadn't had dinner yet, when they looked at what the other person was saying or doing or existing and thought, nice and loud in their mind, "Nope."
Just FINISH Your Thought
Every single text of her ended with '...'
I just couldn't do it man
Look At That Shimmer
His hair was prettier than mine.
Now THIS is petty. Love it.
You Can Never See Past The Name
She had the same name as my mom.
I went out with someone who has the same name as my cat. I brought him back to my house and the second I got home I greeted my cat and the guy looked at me and I knew right then and there that I couldn't do this.
Keep it up.
You'll find your true partner someday.
And don't ever feel bad if you break up with them over something silly or petty. People need to fix how they hold their spoons and forks, anyway.
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There's nothing quite like a good urban legend to put a chill into your bones. One of my favorites? The story about the babysitter and the man upstairs. You know the one. The creepy phone calls begin. The words, "Have you checked on the children?" Unnerving stuff. It's that story that gave us movies like Black Christmas and When a Stranger Calls. I still get a chill up my spine when I think about that story.
It's not just murderers either. Monsters, spirits... Urban legends––and folklore as a whole––have for time immemorial been a part of our consciousness.
After Redditor BeardedDragonzRMine asked the online community, "What monster/urban legend is in your town?" people shared their stories.
"When I was in middle school..."
The Jersey Devil. When I was in middle school my grade went on a trip to a camp in the Pine Barrens where the jersey devil presumably is. I cried when my parents said they didn't want me to go.
The Pine Barrens is a freaky place.
Don't believe me? Watch that one episode of The Sopranos.
"She's the mistress..."
La Llorona. She's the mistress of a Spanish conquistador. When he left her to return to his wife, she went mad from grief and drowned the two children she had out of wedlock with him and killed herself. She arrived at the entrance to Heaven and God asked her what she did with her children. She lied and said she didn't know. So God doomed her to forever wander the Earth looking for their bodies.
This one is a classic.
And there has yet to be a good movie made about her.
"If you're canoeing..."
We have a river that's popular for canoes and paddle boats. Some kids stole a paddle boat one night from the rental place, flipped it over, and drowned.
If you're canoeing on the river and see what looks like an abandoned teal-colored paddle boat with a boat rental decal stuck in the weeds on the river bank, don't approach it. If you report the sighting to the boat rental place they won't bother sending someone out to recover it, because they know the boat won't be there when they arrive.
"He grew up in the Everglades..."
My hometown has the Skunk Ape. A distant cousin to the Sasquatch. He grew up in the Everglades and had long matted, moss-covered fur. Stinks like a skunk. Has been seen crossing back roads in the middle of the night and disappearing into the darkness
Not something I'd want to run into at night.
I've seen enough horror films to know that the one rule is to keep driving.
"All of my neighbors..."
I live in West Africa near a rainforest. All of my neighbors believe there is a "giant pangolin" that lives in the forest (bigger than a man). There have even been some cryptozoologists that have come out to try to find it.
"Rumors of a murderous faceless man..."
Rumors of a murderous faceless man roaming the streets at night were based on a real-life person who'd suffered an extreme accident that destroyed his face. He wasn't, as it turns out, a murderer; he walked at night because he wanted to get fresh air and be left alone.
Well, that ended well.
No reason to spread a rumor about the guy if all he wanted was to enjoy a walk by himself!
"People that cross the bridge..."
I live in St. Petersburg, Florida and the urban legend here has to do with the Skyway Bridge. There have been about 200 suicides. People that cross the bridge claim to see a blonde woman standing in the middle of the road and even sitting in the backseats of their cars. Caring people that got out of their car to help the woman claim that she vanished into thin air. I have crossed the bridge a couple of times and have not seen any sort of thing. I guess she was one of the people that took their own lives by jumping off the 200-foot drop into the water or died when the bridge collapsed ages ago.
"A headless French soldier..."
A headless French soldier from the Napoleonic time is said to ride in our local forest at night. It is an older legend.
"Here in southern Wisconsin..."
Here in southern Wisconsin, we have the Beast of Bray Road, a large canid/werewolf creature that's been sighted several times.
This one has had a crappy movie about it.
The SyFy channel is great like that.
"Years and years ago..."
The White Lady. Years and years ago this woman's daughter got kidnapped by a man and disappeared into the woods of one of our parks. She went out with her dog, searching and searching but never found her. Eventually, the White Lady disappeared as well. For hundreds of years, people claimed to see her ghost and the dog's ghost wandering the park at night. And any man would get chased into the lake by her ghost. Four years ago we had a major windstorm that did a lot of tree damage and this actually happened Scary coincidence?
Creeped out yet?
If not, get to reading. The Dúllahan, a scary headless creature from Irish folklore, beckons. I personally wouldn't want to run into the berbelangs, vampirish creatures that feature in Filipino culture and that are said to dig up graves to feast on corpses.
Have some of your stories to share? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!