It's not men in particular. Women do it too, and I had an awkward eyeballing from a lady today at a department store. The usual, she leaned in to try to get into my direct line of vision, and having gone through this a few days earlier, I caved in exhaustion. I looked at her, dead on without so much as protective sunglasses. She started to speak oddly smiling in a overtly friendly sort of way, or it may have been she knew a better brand of peanut butter than I had, but I was saved by the cashier announcing my total. I paid and left.
On to the "fairer sex." I'd gone to the grocery store a few days ago with a few items of sensible need in mind. As usual, this is a hunt, procure, pay and go home mission for me, where my only hope is to get the groceries. There truly is no other motive in mind. I'm not kidding. I actually just want groceries, but there's a price to paid, and if it were mere dollars, it would be so much simpler.
One who wishes to attain cheese, a few vegetables and maybe chewing gum when I'm feeling brave, must interact with (even if that interaction is avoiding) people. It's work, and days come when I don't know if Dentyne and Rutabagas are worth it. Many days they aren't. Still, time comes to go. Forge ahead no matter the gauntlet of sudden touch-ers, pretend smilers and people who need to talk about growing grass. (I still haven't figured that out.)
A gauntlet, which I often forget about, until I'm in the store, is always there. I don't know why they shop on the same days, same times I do. I go at different times, and it's always different people. One never knows when there will be a sudden need for tomatoes, but these needs arise, and meet the challenge, I do.
I got out of the car, lamenting once again, the list I made and forgot to bring. To my task, I headed in the breezeway door, aiming for the shopping carts, six rows going from my left to far left. Row 1: Had garbage in it. Garbage appeared to be a used tissue and a plastic stick of some sort. Decision made! I immediately look to Row 2: Clean cart! I aimed myself toward it when.....
I noticed that two men were in front of me. I noticed this, because while checking the carts, my peripheral vision was in overdrive, and one of the two might have hit a wall, he was so busy looking backwards. I was cart-focused! I didn't have time for that, and I had food that needed me to get it! Mostly, I noticed them, because he pulled the cart from Row 1 without looking at it to offer it to me, and nearly hit me with it.
I was diverted! I didn't want the used tissue cart. I was in a predicament. You see, I don't care much what people think about me, but I do care about hurting people's feelings. I still hadn't made direct eye contact. (I needed that strength to get my groceries, and I hadn't even gotten in the door yet.), Mr. Chivalrous was handing me the booger tissue cart, and I didn't know what to do!
Fast I could, I grabbed the cart he had, because it was in my way, and I said, "Thank you. That's very kind!" and I ran into the store, fleeing to the rutabagas, toting my used tissue cart. Breathing, I consigned myself to only using the small upper section for what little I needed, leaving the offending tissue in place.
Peripheral vision can be such a pain, and I'm not just talking about the used tissue I pushed around the store with me! I thought I'd lost him, or them, but no. It wasn't seconds after I'd sorted the Sharp Cheddar, that I turned and there was Prince Valiant in Flannel, leaning heavily into my line of site. He didn't realize obviously that everything is in my line of sight, and he was trying to make eye contact! Didn't I already mention I didn't have the energy for that? He leaned in, oncoming from my left, and I leaned right with my pupils. He still in full view, did not in fact, make eye contact, and I escaped the intrusion! Yay!
I made it to the checkout lanes, and yes, there he rounded approaching right. I should get store discounts for having to work this hard! Finally, I say Finally, he seemed to have responded to what I would call my obvious cues of, "I just want some vegetables!!! " and he pulled his cart back away from me, and moved into the next lane. Fortunately, his lane was behind me as I paid my cashier, so none of that leaning stuff continued.
With men, I have to be careful. Looking at them dead on does one of two things. One of them, is scaring them. The other too often involves divorce attorneys.