Randomly From the Airport

 1. I can’t believe these two guys in the airport lounge.  They’re the biggest weenie-heads I’ve seen in a long time.  They’re getting loaded on Bailey’s Irish Cream and having a wide ranging conversation that is absolutely remarkable in its ability to be so consistently offensive.  Thus far one of them has said that he would sleep with his co-worker if she was just a little smarter… because he’s worried she would accidentally reveal the affair to his wife, and now they’re onto how poor people aren’t really as bad off as everyone thinks they are because poor people have lower standards and don’t need much. They aren’t used to it, and they wouldn’t know what to do.  Like, they just need some sort of shelter and electricity – they guess. Especially if they live in a warm place where they can "forage" for food.  They also seem to feel that your race or citizenship is related to how much you need or can realistically expect in the world.  Not everyone can expect to have a life like they do. There isn’t enough.  The best people are going to get the best stuff. It’s survival of the fittest.

2. I totally want this guy’s wife to sneak a wire into his coat so she could know he’s an unfaithful jerk – or at least that he’s trying to be.

3. Maybe she knows he’s like this.  I bet they’ve been to some parties that got seriously awkward.

4. Now they’re talking about vegetarians. The guy on the left, his boss is a vegetarian.   Apparently vegetarians are stupid and weak. Not eating animals "says something about a person."  Oh, wait.  They think there’s a lot more vegetarians in Canada.   (We are in Canada at present.) 

5. Guy on the right (the one who wishes his co-worker was smart enough to have an affair with him – which totally seems like it would work the other way with this dude) feels that there is a connection between "What Canadians are like" and the fact that he’s decided that now we’re mostly vegetarians. 

6. I can’t hear what Canadians are like because they’re getting more Baileys. 

7. I really hope they’re not on my flight.

8. You gotta wonder what on earth goes through someone’s head that they would talk this way in public. For all they know there’s a blogger sitting right behind them, with a camera in her purse and the overwhelming urge to write down everything they’re saying (because I’m leaving out tons because I don’t use language like that) and put their picture right on that blog post.

9.  I’m not that blogger, because I just don’t have it in me to do it, but really, I could be some other blogger with way less self control.

10.  The whole thing makes me wish I was the sort of person who would say something to them, but I can’t imagine what that would be.  I’m old enough to know that pointing out to them that they’re racist, sexist, dishonest and unkind, and so far away from representing the best that humanity has to offer that I really wish they’d just at least lower their voices, especially during the parts where they’re saying things so bad that it makes us look uncool to the aliens watching us and deciding if we’re worth warning about the big comet coming our way….I know that won’t work.  People who are jerks from a distance are usually just bigger jerks if you speak right to them, and really, they’re not going have a change of heart if a vegetarian Canadian says something.  It’s pointless.

11.  I just wish there was something to do about it. 

12. I’m knitting now. Probably the best way to deal with my disappointment that me and these guys are part of the same species. 

287 thoughts on “Randomly From the Airport

  1. Careful. They might go berserk at the sight of a KNITTING Vegetarian Canadian Intelligent Female who won’t have an affair with Jerk #1.

  2. At times like this, I usually count my blessings, and thank God that I didn’t have to be someone like that! Take care.

  3. Just take comfort in the fact that Karma is watching them and has their names in her book. Having your knitting with you should help a great deal as well. Here’s hoping that they are NOT on your flight!

  4. Hi Stephanie,
    Thanks for flying all the time (I hate it!) and coming to Austin and being such an articulate, entertaining writer. SPeaking of self-control, I just spent my lunch hour at the LYS and I am now the proud owner of 2 skeins of Shelter and 7 skeins of Loft. I recieved the email from Brooklyn Tweed yesterday that Loft was now at my LYS but I have such self control that I stayed at work and finished the day, went home and cruised the BT patterns then went and picked out yarn today. I also spent less than $200 so I am very proud of my imagined self-control at this point.
    I hope you enjoy your wonderful colorful weekend in OR.
    Sincerely, Erin

  5. I love this blog……………and I do think you should have put their picture in here!
    And I love your comment that “People who are jerks from a distance are bigger jerks if you speak right to them”
    SO true, you have a great way with words!

  6. Well, I’M not a good person. I’m sitting here hoping against hope that Superweenie is Steph’s seatmate. And sweetie, if you happen to overhear his wife’s name, USE it! Even if you don’t — (look of surprise as he sits down) “Oh, HI — do you remember me? Your wife introduced us …”

  7. Knitting needles have so many wonderful uses…just sayin’ and yeah, really hope they aren’t on your flight too! Have fun back out here on the Wet Coast.

  8. Maybe they’ll say something really stupid and get themselves picked up by Security. You can always hope.

  9. huh. They sound special for sure. When the rage clears I try and feel sorry for dopes like that. Truly – think of what they miss out on experiencing in life with attitudes like that: learning what a real partnership is like, the joy of discovering new things, experiencing new ways of doing things etc etc. I especially pity the fools who think of women only in terms of “hot” and “not hot.” Poor babies.

  10. Sure hope they aren’t on your flight. At least in the airport there is some escape. Feel good about being a better person/blogger — I totally would have posted their photo!

  11. I have, on at least one occasion, politely informed an idiot on a cell phone that: “Excuse me, sir? I’m not sure you realize this, but your half of the conversation is not nearly as interesting to the rest of us as you imagine it might be.” Dead silence from said idiot….. he really had no idea what to say, but he quieted down.
    Probably not smart, but I was really sweet and smiled….. and he moved away quickly.
    I wish I had a blog so I could have blogged about it!
    Barbara M.

  12. It is a shame you have to clean up the language so much…but take good notes. You never know when you will need a serious jerk for a story or something!!!
    PS And, actually, his co-worker would have to be a serious twit to sleep with him. God knows what his wife gets out of the deal!!! My guess is STD’s!

  13. Oh for love of wool and vegetarian Canadians, please post a picture! It can be a big group picture where we have to try to find them, like a Where’s Waldo thing. You don’t have to use arrows or anything like that.

  14. Post a pic and we can try face recognition software and out them on facebook. But seriously if you commute on public transportation as I do. you develop an ability to tune these people out. I have overheard conversations that would curl your hair. I often wonder if people think they are enclosed in a soundproof bubble when they are talking on cell phones. Ipods are the only defense if you haven’t developed the tune out skill. Try tuning in to a knitting podcast.

  15. Bah. The best we can do is hope Karma gets them, and also, that they’re sterile.
    Hope the rest of the flight goes tons better.

  16. Re #11: Blast them with your secret death ray. Or bump into their table on your way out and spill hot coffee all over their laps.

  17. Well… Ignorance is bliss… they must be really happy!
    Honestly, just be happy the dopes managed to find each other. It’s been my experience that someone like that who has a “Yes-man” with him is far less obnoxious than one on his own — trying to push his extremely narrow viewpoint on those around him and becoming increasingly irate in the process.
    Just remember that your lot could be worse… you could be his wife instead of Joe’s!

  18. I just read this post to my two teenage daughters because it tied in so well with our discussion during school today about where people get their beliefs and creeds for determining their life course. Just an ex-veg, American trying to raise children with some common sense, logical thinking, and compassion for their fellow man.

  19. In this case I’m curious if they assumed everyone around them also understood their “language”. Just cuz it reminds me of the time I was with friends in a youth hostel in Germany with a large group of French schoolgirls who spent the shared breakfast making fun of us stupid Americans in French, right up until one of our group sweetly asked one of their group to pass the butter. In French. They were very quiet after that. It’s been 25 years and it still makes me smile.

  20. How you didn’t just lean over and puncture their appallingly over-inflated egos with your knitting needles, I’ll never know! Amazing self-control you must have, Stephanie.

  21. Are they from that tv show that does outrageous wrong stuff to see what people do?

  22. For once (just this once!) I’m not with Rams. I’ve seen too many of these Primitive People in my life to bother with any kind of confrontation.
    Nothing anybody says will change what they think and how they act. Obviously they’ve managed to find a spouse, but one can only hope they haven’t reproduced.
    All one can do is gather one’s knitting and beer and quietly relocate. If one happens to be a person of faith, then one can remind oneself that Someone Else has the job of sorting it all out.

  23. Snort. I have to say, those kind of folk (women can be equally scarey, unfortunately) both terrify me, and give me tons of wonderful things to blink rapidly at in disbelief and then break into hysterical laughter at. I teach ethics (among other things) at our local community college, and the case study that this kind of conversation can provide…well! Wow.

  24. I knew they were jerks when I read “Bailey’s” Really? Wouldn’t want that hangover. Oh wait……they deserve it and then some.

  25. I’m going to focus on the positive here: I’m so very pleased to learn that you’re a vegetarian, too!

  26. I am hoping that they drink so much Bailey’s that they become drunk and they aren’t allowed onto their flight – Karma has a way of kicking the jerks in the butt.
    Keep calm and knit on – you are the nicest knitting Canadian vegetarian woman I “know”. Good luck and enjoy the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

  27. i had a similar situation Stephanie, on a commuter railroad. I stewed for about 5 minutes and then girded up every ounce of courage i had and said to this group of 4 really horrid men that they were racist and i really didnt like hearing what they were saying and wished they wouldn’t be so publicly vocal about their inappropriate thoughts. They did me the courtesy of looking abashed and lowered their voices and toned down their commentary. it was one of my proudest moments (although my heart didn’t stop pounding for about 10 minutes more). I encourage everyone to say something (if you feel safe doing so). Sometimes you are surprised by your fellow man (who sometimes just needs a swift kick in the rump…often they know exactly how wrong they are).

  28. Don’t you just wish you could surreptitiously drop an RF ID tag on them or something, with the URL for this blog posting, so that the rest of us could spot them after they’ve gone their separate ways and are trying to blend in with the humans?

  29. Comment #1 for the WIN. I think you should poke them both HARD with that needle and deflate those overblown egos a bit…

  30. Umm…honestly, if they’re past their teens and getting sauced on Bailey’s in the airport lounge I can tell from here (20 miles away if you’re in YVR) that they’re really unsophisticated. They probably think they’re suave to the max which is just sad.
    Every single thing every one of us does is the best thing our brains could think of to do at that moment. Think of it. This is the best thing they can think of to do and say. Makes me feel sorry for them.

  31. I’m sure the aliens will look more kindly on us because of the knitting. (“Psst, hey, human lady, just have to say…you really shouldn’t sweat that mistake in row 12?”)

  32. Chagrined but not surprised that they are (presumably) Americans. Please accept my apology on behalf of the rest of us down here. (Vegetarian Canadian — redundant?)

  33. I don’t know. People like that reassure me that I’m not as bad as I think I am sometimes… But it must suck to be married to them!

  34. Well if when the karma wheel does spin and you get what you send out 3 times +. I hate to be in their shoes.however I think I would alerted security that they maybe a “little” to drunk to fly.Just in case, and yes , “bless their hearts”

  35. There’s no reasoning with insanity. The mentality of these guys is ridiculous. The ‘best people get the best stuff’? The fact that they’re including themselves in the fictious ‘best people’ category is ludicrous. Unfortunately, too many people think like this.

  36. “People who are jerks from a distance are usually just bigger jerks if you speak right to them”.
    Absolutely true! Just keep knitting, it will make you feel better.

  37. Heheh…Me sneaky, suggest having a nice LOUD cell conversation (on a dead phone) where you tell someone how you just came across the BEST blog fodder EVER and you’ll make sure they get pictures of these idiots….and HOW many hits did my site get today? Ten thousand? AWESOME!
    etc and so on….just to see if they even notice. 🙂
    And if on the same flight…’oh heavens! My steel double pointed 00 needle! I DROPPED it!’ , right into his seat crease, where it just happens to perforate him in an incredibly uncomfortable fashion…..

  38. “…disappointment that me and these guys are part of the same species.”
    Darling…you’re not. You (and I know this, because I’ve met you) are human. They are jerks. Not the same at all.

  39. What grown man gets voluntarily drunk on Bailey’s Irish Cream? That’s just icky. Let’s comfort ourselves with the probability of their having really really bad hangovers, and that their stomachs will be as churny as they made Stephanie’s.

  40. Well said.
    My husband and I just shake our head at people in the wild. Standards. Morals. Decency. Wish we could spot those more often.

  41. You just proved again how nice Canadians are. Because why respond to rudeness with more rudeness?

  42. I have to agree that non-confrontation was the way to go here. Although you should have surreptitiously taken their pics. Then we could find them and make their lives — interesting. In the ancient Chinese curse sort of way.

  43. I admire your self-control. Just imagine what kinnearing them would have done! But you’re right — speaking up would only have convinced them of their own superiority (in an arse-backward kind of way of course).

  44. You’re clearly a better person than me, as it hasn’t even occurred to you that you are currently holding pointy sticks!
    And seriously, who gets drunk on Bailey’s?

  45. I realized at 3:00 pm that you were leaving today. I can’t believe we haven’t seen each other in 3 weeks.
    I’m the blogger that would have added a picture. But first I would have hit on them to get their contact info. I’m a total ass hole.
    Fenner wants to send a note to you: fffeeener

  46. Yuck! I agree, it’s so disheartening to think that, even with in-every-way-possible jerks like that, we are more alike than we are different. Gross.

  47. Just report them as being intoxicated. If they have had to much to drink, they won’t be on a plane.
    Justice 🙂

  48. It is very possible that their wives are knitters and read this blog. So when they get home and talk about drinking Bailey’s and vegetarian Canadians, I wouldn’t want to be them.

  49. Relax, soon you’ll be in beautiful Port Ludlow. There will be some powerful knitting energy forces in Jefferson County this weekend. In addition to your powerful dyeing workshops. About 150 knitters will be gathered slightly north of you at Fort Worden in Port Townsend. This is the annual Fort Worden Knitting Retreat weekend. This is a very unstructured get together, without classes, for knitters state-wide to gather and share. Maybe we’ll create a harmonic converegence over the Olympic Peninsula.

  50. Uggh, another ugly American. Another reason (like I needed another one) that I want to move to Canada.

  51. This is SO funny and awful.
    I have brand-new neighbors who seemed quirky and funny. Then one night, two weeks after moving in, the husband was having a drink on the stoop and I came out with my little boy to let the dog pee. The man must think we’re on the same wavelength, or that we’re awfully close friends, because he got all chummy and then busted out an offensive, crazy diatribe about what the hell america is coming to and other world issues. He actually used the the word “Sand Nigger” in talking about middle east issues, raged on about how pissed off everyone should be about the financial crisis, and then spoke a little bit of German, apparently to drive home his point. Oh yes, and he spit out how utterly thankful he was that they had never had any children, because he would be so worried about the legacy he was leaving for his kid.
    It lasted about 3 minutes, and was so bizarro and confusing that I still have NO idea if this guy is a twisted liberal or a hippie-dressing conservative; I didn’t even want to ask for clarification because I couldn’t handle any more vitriol. I just know that he’s nutty and I have to share a wall with him.
    I opted for non-confrontation and made an excuse to go inside and feed my family. Sometimes, the mind just boggles.

  52. If Karma works (and I totally and completely believe it does), this guy’s wife is fully aware of what he is like, and knows exactly what’s going on, and is merely hanging in until he makes a fortune, at which time she’s going to turn all the evidence she’s collected through the years over to the meanest, toughest, nastiest divorce attorney his money can buy, and take him to the cleaners, and the entire time she’s thanking the gods that they never had kids.
    Hopefully they live in a warm climate so he can forage for his food.
    Jackasses. Both of them. And, sadly, I suspect they’re both “ugly Americans.” Most of us try so hard not to perpetuate the sterotype, and then some bozos go and blow it for the rest of us.

  53. Yep, unfortunately your experience once again confirms that yes, these sub-humans do exist. the joke is really on them and all you can do is keep knitting.
    i’d like to see jerk no. 1 make it here in the far north! go forage in the twenty below dude and see how that works.

  54. It’s so frustrating to hear people like that and not be able to respond. It’s probably best that you didn’t, since it’s likely that they’d point all of the venom and bigotry right at you.
    Also, these are the type of people that you can’t have a rational conversation with, so you’d be wasting your breath trying to explain the many ways in which what they were saying was inappropriate.
    (P.S., For what it’s worth, I’m not Canadian – I’m from Philadelphia. )

  55. I hope they weren’t on your flight. If they were, I hope they weren’t seated near you. If they were on your flight and seated near you, I hope you had some earplugs (the orange squishy kind) handy to block out their conversation. What I really hope was that they were on a different flight with lots and lots of turbulence, and that they got sick from all that Bailey’s. What a couple of jerk-wads.

  56. I got drunk off bailey’s once in college, I was sick for a week while all that fat worked its way out of my system. Fear not: Mr. Darwin and his laws will likely kick in very soon, by way of heart failure.
    Survival of the fittest, indeed.

  57. Holy cow, Lynda the Guppy has hit it right on the nose.
    “Hopefully they live in a warm climate so he can forage for his food.”
    Survival of the Fittest, indeed. Their conversation smacked of overcompensation…

  58. If they look like they are getting on the same flight as you. In all fairness to the flight attendants, you should let them know you watched the pair getting louder and more obnoxious as they got drunk. And would they please not seat you any where near them as you have a weak stomach for that kind of smell and sound, and you don’t want to add to their work load. Bet the airlines invite them off the plane!

  59. Piggery, pure piggery. Although I feel it is an insult to pigs to say that. I often think of my knitting as a anti-dumb ass cone, like the cone of silence in Get Smart. I admire your self control and feel sorry for the one guy’s wife who is probably totally clueless her husband is such a skank.

  60. I feel your frustration and disappointment and irritation. I never quite know what to do either, so I do nothing. Or rather, I sit and quietly imagine things happening to them that are appropriate. In your case, I might imagine a flash mob of knitting vegetarian faithfully married kind Canadians suddenly advancing on the group of racist, sexist Bailey-ers and surrounding them in an ever-tightening circle, arms pointed straight out, index fingers aimed at them, and en mass intoning “Not One of Us” until they cracked and ran away to hopefully think about things.
    But that’s me. Have a good flight, sweetie.

  61. I usually take the low road and walk by them talking to my companion loudly about how “Men who drink Baileys/drink in airports/sleep with coworkers” are SO DISGUSTING, no woman would EVER consider even TOUCHING one.
    I LOVE the low road.

  62. 1) Apologies from the US, because I would imagine they were Americans. Sigh.
    2) Some of us are working really hard down here to raise a knew, less ignorant generation. Will get back to you on that in 20 years or so.
    3)I really, really think rams and Liz R and I SHOULD have a drink date. I pretty much always agree with what they have to say.
    4) I also really like what you have to say. I almost said I really like YOU but, as I often have to remind myself, we are not, sadly, drinking/knitting buddies. Just in my fantasies. Or if you ever find yourself in Vermont. Just saying.

  63. These guys are getting drunk on Bailey’s Irish Creme…I know what their alcohol of choice tells me about them.

  64. Gah. I have been the poor, though not super poor. I don’t think it is right to say that we can do with less. Just because we have to make do with less doesn’t mean we are not dreaming of one day having more.

  65. kitten, it isn’t about the Baileys. It’s about drinking enough of it to get blotto. Gag.
    And I am a Canadian. I am sad to say I have heard such crap from my fellow person. No colour or citizenship boundaries for ignorance.

  66. I can understand the feeling that no matter what one says or does it will not make a difference. But I’m old enough now that I have promised myself that anytime someone says something in a conversation involving me – unlike this one – that I will not silently endure thoughtless, racist, sexist, chauvinist (in the true nationalistic sense of the word) lest someone think that perhaps I too agree with the outrageous sentiments. Life is too short to allow unjust, nasty and stupid generalizations go without challenge.

  67. nothing to do with the superweenies but I just had to say Hi. I just finished reading ALL your blog posts from start to today to help me feel like I have friends in my new town. Now I’m wishing even harder that I could come live over in Canada.
    much love from England 🙂

  68. I figure these two were just a couple of lackeys who had never been much out from behind their desks and for some idiotic reason, their boss decided to send these losers on a glorified errand (’cause you know these goobs aren’t management)and suddenly they think they’re setting the world on fire with their “worldly wisdom and experience”. What a couple of boneheads! Sorry that you had to endure their garbage.

  69. If they think that having conversations like this in public and having these kinds of ideas running through their puny brains is a good idea in the kind of world we live in today, they have another thing coming. Its so pathetic to me when people still hold these misconceptions about gender, race and socioeconomic status – just goes to show how uneducated they really are. Where have they been for the last century? Honestly. Also, I think his co-worker is probably much smarter than he gives her credit for and he’s just detracting from the fact that he’s the dumbass.

  70. Drunk on Bailey’s? Wimps of the first order.
    It would have been fun to somehow get hold of at least one business card and then e-mail a fake blog post (of the sort you discussed). Even if you could only send it to one of them…
    I also concur with one of the other comments – the one about having a really loud cell conversation about the blog post you were going to write. I have a friend who is the master of that sort of thing – it works wonders.
    Glad you got home for DH’s birthday. Hippo birdie to him (more fun to say “to ewe”, but that wouldn’t be correct in this case, eh?)!

  71. I don’t want to be a jerk, but getting loaded on Bailey’s in the airport definitely says something about people…
    Also, gross.

  72. Definitely NOT the same species. There have, at times, been reports of lower life forms mimicking human behavior – but as you can see, they are very bad at it and usually stick out. They will hopefully be unable to procreate because, as they remarked, it IS survival of the fittest…and some breeds are just unfit for breeding. (My guess is that the female coworker has mentioned his wife to him in an attempt to remind him that he is unavailable, or blatantly turned him down. Were he a little smarter, he might see what really happened.)

  73. They are getting loaded on Bailey’s of all things? Jeez… I think that says a lot about them. Can’t they be “real men” and drink scotch or Coors light or something? 😉
    And Kitten, I too like a little Bailey’s on ice, but it’s not my choice of beverage to get drunk on in an airport bar. Much more of an accidental drunk after Christmas dinner…
    Great post, sad that people are out there, but they did give me a chuckle.

  74. Thanks for the laugh, Stephanie!
    Silly people, that’s for sure. I’m sure that the drunker they get, the louder they get, too. Maybe someone who knows their wives will say something when they get home?
    I hope you’re home safe and sound now where you can relax and catch up on laundry. 🙂

  75. I suppose it depends on how unpleasant one wishes to be.
    There is always the general comment to the air that “isn’t it amazing how little it takes to get fired these days?”
    ….if there is any way you found out the name of the company either cretin works at you can always send a “gee, I know your people don’t usually behave like this” letter to them. And the newspaper.
    The truly nasty thing would be to notify airport security that you overheard them discussing something threatening….of course, that might not be honest….

  76. I bet that guy gets fired the minute the plane lands. His boss probably wore the wire and his Human Resources director listened taking copious notes.
    Oh, if only it was so.

  77. They’re almost undoubtedly “ours”, sorry about that.
    I’d ask you to just keep them up there because we really don’t need them back, but it’s not fair to you. (Unless you know a quiet, out of the way glacier in which to store them…)
    I’ve begun wondering if we’re undergoing dramatic speciation again, or if the world’s always been this full of idiots.

  78. As a black woman…I can almost see these folks. They are the kind of guys who make fun of God, are not too kind to others who don’t hold their point of view, are hugely insecure and are unhappy with themselves. They also have little real respect for woman…which is obvious as they take their wives for granted and think their female associate is nothing more than a toy.
    Leave them alone and knit Steph. These kind have been around a long time and may die before you do.

  79. A few years ago, I had a similar experience during a flight where two foul-mouthed males (I can’t really call them “men”) crudely described their weekend exploits in the city. It sounded like they were going back to work on an oil rig. Lucky for me, there was an empty seat on the plane and I moved. I really wanted to wash out their mouths with soap. You showed a lot of class and eventually fate will deal with them.

  80. I’ve always said that if people are willing to act that way in person, I shudder to think of how they behave when no one is watching and they are in the privacy of their own home.
    Mostly I just feel sorry for them that their point of view of life is so tiny and twisted.
    Hope the rest of the flight was devoid of dumbness.

  81. Take comfort in the probability that a binge on Baily’s has just got to produce one of the worst hangovers known to man. Really, it must.
    Also, what person with class gets drunk on Baily’s Irish Cream? It’s the sort of thing a bunch of 21 year-old girls, one of whom has just bought the cutest clown decanter that squirted the liquor of choice (rum) out of…somewhere hilarious, might do. And they might live to regret it. And for the rest of their lives feel a little sick every time they see a clown. Or a decanter. But I digressed big time, didn’t I?

  82. I usually lurk but had to tell you about the way my friend handled a similar situation. She wrote a note and dropped it on their table. The note thanked them for providing something interesting to write on her blog since she couldn’t come up with an interesting post. She also said that she hoped the pictures she took turned out because they were an attractive group and she thought her readership would like to see such good looking gentlemen. She didn’t have a blog but it sure shut those guys up.

  83. Many years ago, I had long rather straight hair. I went to a Ren Faire and said hair was in a muffin cap most of the day. It was also wicked hot. Sometime that afternoon, I pulled off the cap and poured water on my head. A minute later, I heard these two drunken a-holes saying that they bet I had a real “b*tch’s haircut.” I rounded on them with a “What did you just say?” They held up their hands and said sorry, but a minute later I heard them say it again. I called them out again, but then I realized that there is no getting through the alcohol when idiots like that are on a roll.
    I never did figure out what kind of haircut I must have had.

  84. Probably every woman over 20 has run into males who have yet to learn what it means to be part of the humane race. Some are educable, keeping working at it. In my 20’s I met a proud member of the KKK in the early 1970’s. He was in the military (which is in itself incombatable). We dated, we talked, he went home for the Holidays, came back and informed me he had left the Klan. I don’t know what he’s up to now but I’d like to think he likes himself and the rest of humanity better because of that decision. Empathy and sympathy don’t come in every genetic birth package. They frequently are feminine traits.

  85. Knitting can take the edge off most anything. That and beer!
    Happy and safe travels in Canada and the US.

  86. It would seem these guys are escaping reality because it is so threatening to their sense of power and control, so they are compensating and commiserating. One wonders if the Bailey’s will show up on the expense report.

  87. Well, stupidity, bad behavior, and nasty language crosses all borders, unfortunately. I’m counting my blessings, knowing I have no one in my circle of friends or family who behaves that way. Thank God, they didn’t make fun of knitters!

  88. When I was a kid my father got sued for libel for saying something in print that was a matter of public, legal record, quoting from the police and the courts. It dragged on for ten years and nearly cost him his house. I hope you got pictures but I’m feeling protective of you and not wanting you to post them; just knowing you could would be gratifying enough.
    And I’m so very sorry you had to encounter those creeps.

  89. Baileys? Seriously? The conversation was bad enough but that just takes the cake. These guys are clearly clueless.

  90. Pathetic. So sorry you had to be around these neanderthals. I really hope they weren’t on your flight.

  91. To put it shortly:
    “What the @(*#?”
    I’m trying to think of what I’d say to them, but I’d probably just be the blogger with less self-control.

  92. I guess in order for we as humans to aspire toward enlightenment, we need parameters. These guys do their part, by showing us where the bottom is.
    When I meet people like that, I like to fantasize about letting them be the first participants in a new Moon Colonization program. There are no phones on the moon. (Tho I bet these guys would be content with no phones, as long as they could build a Hooters.) Then again, there’s no oxygen on the Moon either.

  93. Sounds like these guys are from the US. Or easily could be. Here’s hoping their unmentionables freeze during those long, vegetarian Canadian winters.

  94. They’re idiots. You did the right thing. As my lovely Southern friend says:
    Never argue with a pig. It just frustrates you and annoys the pig.

  95. So very well said.
    I was once in Paris, having my one “real” French mean with my cousin; and our meal was spoiled by some ugly Americans behind us ranting about their prejudices. We stayed polite and silent – but they ruined our meal.
    I’ve told people to “shush” in the theater, and to stop texting during the play, but never told anyone how offensive they were.

  96. Sounds like you were listening to some of our (U.S.) politicians or radio/television commentators.

  97. Poetic justice would be if the man’s wife was a knitter and recognized her husband from your description. Especially if he was the one wanting to have an affair.

  98. Sad end to your tour. Sorry you had to hear that conversation. I wish you had taken a pic of the back of their heads and posted it on this blog. We know there still are numbskulls like that out there. It would just be fun to guess who these ones are. But, they’d be the first to call for the airport security so you did the right thing. Safety first for a woman every time.

  99. Right.., Its better to “dis” someone(s) incognito (on a web page to hundreds of people) than to actually RISK making the effort to engage and educate change them (like actually discussing/conversing with them, as if they were worthy/human beings, and might/could benefit by the opportunity to learn something) Do you think the “hosers” read your blog? (Me thinks, not… So where is the “gain”?)

  100. Here is what I do when confronted with idiots like that. Smile serenely, secure in the knowledge that they have very small penises. Compensation has become a way of life for them. Then just K1,P2…..

  101. The “gain” is in this discussion. Confronting the men would be useless, as their mindset is too fixed to educate. This is proven by their comments. By posting it, Stephanie generates a conversation on the incident and what, if anything, can be done. I look on these attitudes as generational issues, by which I mean it can take generations to change. IE: My grandmother was racist. My daughter can’t comprehend being so. Sometimes you just have to wait for those with the attitudes to die out, while working to educate the young better.
    Thanks, Stephanie, for causing us to think on this.

  102. Steph – its too bad you aren’t the type of person who would LIE and tell them you just blogged what they were talking about and hoped that his wife or co-worker would see! The look on their faces is priceless. Or just act like you are on your phone and say loudly “What?? I can’t hear you! There are these two drunks at the bar talking way too loud.”

  103. Makes me want to wash out my ears and my soul. My life has been so changed for the good by a Canadian Vegetarian humanitarian – you! Please don’t talk to people like that…nooo.

  104. Maybe they are the aliens, trying desperately to fit in — nah, that would be an even sadder commentary on our species. Pass the yarn please.
    Ca. Karate Knitter

  105. I just want you to know that although we are tight on money, and although we just had our first snow in Wisconsin, I have decided that instead of buying a new winter coat, I will be buying your new book and a skein of yarn. Knit, knit on! lol 🙂

  106. this guy has a pretty good idea about dealing with racists:
    basically his idea is to address how they sound instead of how they feel. I’ve tried his approach and it has gotten some to at least crawl back under their rock. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to forage for some food…

  107. Usually I read Ram’s posts (as, 11/2 at 5:16 pm) and I laugh and think, I love Rams. And then I get shy and go do something else.
    But once in a while people should be brave and so, here I am.
    I suspect a lot of us love you, and your comments.

  108. I’m sorry. Just remember, Port Ludlow, Port Ludlow, Port Ludlow. Hope it’s as wonderful as I imagine it to be and you enjoy yourself enough to forget about the jerks.
    And if I were there, I would be that blogger who took their pictures and posted them. And if they asked me what I was taking their picture for, it would to post for my fellow Americans, “How Not To Be a Belligerent American Abroad.”
    Have a great and safe trip.

  109. Take comfort in the fact that they’re NOT Canadian……..and that they’re not knitters either – which makes them a completely different species from all of us!!

  110. Oops! Yup, sorry, those are our a**holes. I’m not sure how they got out. We Americans only keep them around so that the decent guys actually get appreciated around here. 🙂

  111. First I want to thank you for controlling your temper and not confronting them, then to thank you for not using your needles on them, because that would have ended all knitting on planes (see, needles are weapons! would have been the result) and thirdly for not posting their pictures. Trash like those men definitely portrayed themselves are also very nasty mean moneychasers through claiming being offended in public and having lost face and or business through the picture posting, remember pictureposting does resemble calling names. You did the right thing, I normally do not greet trash (real trash, I mean) so why confront human trash, it would make no difference at all, except that trash can stink when it hits you. I hope the wife is waiting at home with a full bottle of Baileys, the largest one, man, it would hit so much better then a baseballbat.

  112. Nearly 2.5 million years of evolution and that’s what we’ve ended up with? Really?

  113. The answer to 8 is nothing. Absolutley nothing at all. I dont think anything ever goes throught the head of such people other than an occational “Me hungry”.

  114. Knitter + Canadian + Vegetarian + woman most likely not to be wearing a bra = low down on the ‘Studs’ pecking order. And by stud I mean the ones you hit with a hammer.
    I love the bit about not sleeping with his co-worker as she’s not smart enough, seems smart enough to avoid this guy.
    I really think this conversation and blasting it out across the interweb is justification for things like facebook. I have no idea how you restrained yourself

  115. From one vegetarian Canadian to another, fohgetabahtit. And listen to some cheerful Canadian music. Jimmie’s Still Jimmie by Joel Plaskett is a good one.

  116. Lets just hope the bartender was charging them double for being jerks. Good thing you had your knitting; this really is an instance where the phrase: “I knit so I don’t kill people” comes to mind.

  117. Your blog is always funny and heartwarming to read. But I get an especial kick out of reading when you are on tour – the audiences, the splendid people you meet, the socks, the new knitters…. And the airport posts really crack me up!

  118. Quite likely they are not the same species. They are a couple of Homo Neanderthaliensis who (that?) have escaped extinction because they were too dim to tell their time had come.

  119. I’m afraid I disagree. Whether or not it changes the mind (which is unlikely with the braindead), it makes me feel less angry and I get a kick out of calmly saying something clever but to the point in these kinds of situations, such as at a hockey game I was at a while back. After getting tired of the wildly offensive shoutings (outside of even what’s acceptable at hockey) by a group of what appeared to be loser frat boys behind me, I turned and asked what junior high they were there with. Then again I’m the kind of person who will make jokes just for myself but for me it just feels so much better to say something. The trick is to stay calm and without cursing, name calling, etc

  120. The only thing good about those guys is their drink of choice. Though, frankly, it’s put me off Bailey’s for awhile. Those people always get me really agitated and unhappy. I know I shouldn’t let people do that, but I get all kinds of pent up negative energy. And also feel a bit disappointed in myself for not saying anything, though I know, as you do, it can only make things worse.
    Knit Zen.

  121. A picture is needed, definitely. With the word UNWANTED underneath.
    But your blog is so popular they would hear about it and they probably have lawyers on retainer because they need somebody to make them feel important and so they continue irritating the world while they drink.
    You’re right, no picture, just knit.
    I’d still like to blast them with an air horn.

  122. Can’t resist commenting…..I fly for work 80% of the year. Let me just say it is not the best side of humanity that you generally see in airports. However, the people watching is amazing if you are able to take the step back and pretend you’re an anthropologist…..

  123. CLEARLY they ARE of a different species…but to imply they should be beating their chests and picking bugs from one another’s hair would be an insult to apes.
    I agree with some of the above comments.
    Kharma will get them.

  124. The mean part of me says: these guys probably never cheat on their wives: they probably don’t have the guts to do any more than brag about their imaginary exploits to like-minded types.
    the American part of me says: its annoying how esily recognizable as Americans these guys are. We’re mad that these guys were making such broad and unflattering stereotypes, and yet most of us here agree that they’re obviously Americans, and that Americans in general can often be recognized by their obnoxious behavior. Of course there are some annoying Americans, but there are lots of lovely Americans who simple don’t get noticed at all.
    the realistic part of me says: on the other hand, I’ve chosen to date a Canadian fellow (a kilt-wearing knitter, in fact)
    the rest of me says: lets fight back by raising our TSF goal! We can’t change these individuals, but we can maybe help the desperately, tragically poor, and thats gotta help the karmic vibes, yes?

  125. Glad to see I’m not the only one torn when I see/hear people like that. Part of me figures, karma will catch up with them. Part of me figures, saying anything just bugs the pig (family shorthand referring to anything that’s a waste of time, i.e. teaching a pig to sing: it wastes your time and annoys the pig). Part of me thinks I’m being a coward and condoning their actions/thoughts by not saying anything. A middle ground that sometimes works for me is to put on my “stern mom” face and voice, and ask them to keep their volume down.

  126. This is yet another occasion when you quietly thank whatever gods may be for your KNITTING!! Do you think EZ dreamt of such situations when she said Knit On through all crises!??

  127. I enjoy people watching. It’s a comedy along the lines of ‘you can’t make this stuff up!’ Being as offensive as they were, I wish I could have expressed my displeasure in their public behavior (‘Bless your hearts. Your mothers must be *so* proud’) or asked them to please lower their voices out of consideration for those trying to read, or walk away (that would have been hard with that comedic material unfolding). But I probably wouldn’t have. I know my head would be full of snarky thoughts and witticisms that wouldn’t help.
    Thanks Steph, for opening a conversation where people discussed what they could or would or might do in the same situation. Good reading.

  128. Self control is a fine art.
    Also: I would bet that they are from the U.S., and are thus pointing out why some of us pretend to be from Canada when we travel in Europe. For the record, I am from the U.S. and find their behavior intensely obnoxious.

  129. “never argue with idiots – they’ll drag you down and beat you with experience.”
    “never argue with drunken idiots – they’ll drag you down, beat you with experience, then throw up on you to celebrate the win.”

  130. See? This is why security should let blowdarts full of sleeping medicine through security.
    Sleeping medicine wouldn’t really hurt them, right? Well, it might make them miss their flight…

  131. I was feeling sorry for the Jerk’s wife until I realized that someone who married a person like that can’t have all her bulbs screwed into the chandelier either.

  132. I think that’s my husband…. Just kidding!
    I praise your self control; I’d have had to remove the abuse from my presence. I have in the past removed myself from the pain zone of “ear shot” AND put the ear buds in as a safety precaution against further trauma (mine or theirs).
    I _think_ I would have said something quick and cutting and quiet, “Are you serious? Tsk tsk. Why don’t you quiet down.”
    Or really, really sweetly and a bit more loudly, “Do I look a smart vegetarian who has lived on the financial edge? Please find a new topic and discuss it quietly, or talk somewhere you aren’t inflicting your abuse on others.”
    Maybe not. I wasn’t there… but I _have_ stood up to strangers in the past…
    They can believe what they believe. No changing that. But it’s amazing how shaming it can be to be confronted by the reality.

  133. Or figured out where they worked, and reported back to the employer… bwah hah hah…
    Knit on!

  134. When I meet people like that I like to imagine what will happen to them when the apocalypse comes. I also think of this quote from The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy: “a bunch of mindless jerks who will be the first against the wall when the revolution comes”. Vegetarians will survive…meat eaters like them, will wonder where their McDonalds is.
    I get all my life lessons from the Hitchicker’s Guide.

  135. 1) I’m with Rams too. Now there’s an wicked sense of humor I can really get behind.
    2) Really irritates me because they’re making all us non-Canadian, non-vegetarian, caucasians look bad. Most of us, I think, are really pretty kind, tolerant, and intelligent. It seems the dumb ones are always the loudest. Maybe that’s so they will get killed first and leave us decent folk alive to repopulate the earth.
    3) You could always put a dp you don’t love in the crevice of their seat when they get up to drain out the Baileys.

  136. Speak? Who said anything about speaking to them? You’re armed with pointy sticks, girl. I bet you’d’ve gotten a round of applause from a lot of the people within earshot of them, had you used them. Or you could have said only girly men get drunk on Bailey’s.

  137. hmmm, next time take paragraph 11 and write that on a piece of paper and leave it for them to read. Because you’re right that engaging them would be pointless.
    I think I would have been the kind of blogger to post their picture, at least, I’d like to think so. hehe.

  138. Loved this post…still laughing. We all have these experiences, but no one could have been so eloquent in describing it!
    While it’s already been said, I agree…. Karma will triumph and come back to bite them in their drunk (Bailey’s …really!?!) lazy, prejudicial asses. The spouses are knitters and so are their HR managers!! And… you CAN’T fix stupid!

  139. Good Grief – how much Baileys do you have to drink to get that drunk & obnoxious?
    I hope you give us an update about whether they wedre to drunk to fly,etc.
    Totally off topic…I wish your blog had “agree” and “funny” buttons like Ravelry. There are so many great comments here! Like Rams’ “oh…your wife introduced us,” Presbytera’s “one can only hope they haven’t reproduced” and Ro’s knitting flash mob scenario – ROFLMAO

  140. On the bright side, at least you aren’t related to them. One of my uncles sends out mass hate-emails with some of this crap in it … and when it isn’t the hateful stuff, it is the most vile sexist “jokes” that aren’t funny, just crude and offensive. Maybe he is one of those guys? Gawd I hope not. He would totally be drinking Bailey’s, anything Irish. (though I know no actual person from Ireland who would share even a crumb of these attitudes.)
    Anyway the fact that I share DNA with this guy depresses the crap out of me. I’m trying to do better for the section of the gene pool allotted to me.

  141. If I had enough wool balls, I would of said “hey could you guys smile so I can place your photo on my blog with your conversation I just wrote down!”

  142. “People who are jerks from a distance are usually just bigger jerks if you speak right to them”
    That’s a TShirt I would proudly wear. 🙂

  143. And people wonder why the “Occupy” movement is gathering such steam worldwide??
    I assume from their description & solution for the “undeserving” poor that they see themselves as the “deserving” rich?? or the 1%.
    This guarantees their rights: they get all the perks & get to behave as they choose – sleep with anyone “clever enough to keep it from the wife, (this is where I nearly vomited!!) get pissed on Baileys & loudly proclaim their ignorance for the other 99% to hear.
    Spare me!!!
    What a shame that the 1% have no taste, no style & appear to have missed out on human compassion.
    I don’t know whether to feel sorry for them or revisit my French roots & say off with their heads!!!
    Going to get my knitting now, need to blow off some mad.
    I hope you enjoy your travel from here on in.
    London, UK

  144. What’s sad is, had you confronted them, it is likely that most people would have looked at you like you were the trouble maker.

  145. Oh Steph, you are a better woman than me. I would have gotten out my camera and even tried to catch names and home town. Beth

  146. You’re a good person with a conscience. You used words to describe the situation without revealing who. Unfortunately, what you describe maybe part of what’s wrong with our society. The devaluing of goodness. Perhaps requiring all people right out of high school to do a years service helping others who need help. A total immersion into helping others without watching any tv. I don’t know what the best solution will be to our problems, but part of the problem is that real solutions aren’t surfacing. You did the right thing by telling the story. it’s enough to make the soul feel ill.

  147. should have taken a picture and posted it — “do you know either of these 2 stupid guys” — you would be doing everyone a favor

  148. Do not consider using your needles as weapons. Use them only for good, not for evil. You are tired, probably exhausted that is why those dopes are getting to you. Any other day you would probably just shrug it off as some blow hard trying to impress his boss by how cool or tough or worldly he is. If he is an American, I apologize for his boorish behavior. If he is Texan, I’ll be waiting for him at the airport … with my knitting needles.

  149. I think I want to marry Rams – I love her idea! Also, just a note to say how much I’m enjoying the new book. I’m actually rationing out the reading so it lasts a bit longer.

  150. So, it’s probably wrong for you to walk up to the would-be cheater guy and say “HEY! How are you? Oh, you probably don’t remember me, but I am an old, school friend with your wife.” And then give him an “I heard what you were saying there” look and walk away. I mean, that’s wrong, right?

  151. Sorry you had to be present for the insipid stupidity…unfortunately I work at a Fortune 500 Co where alot of that conversation goes on. Why do meatheads exist? Who knows. What in evolutions name decided that they are a necessary evil in our society? Who knows. They make my blood boil. It is one of those moments when a knitter feels they can multi-task their needles. sock maker/eye poker.

  152. Kinnearing – it would have been the perfect opportunity then post their pic all over the internets.
    They sound like dumb Americans…on behalf of the rest of the american population….I’m sorry.

  153. Walk up to them and say “Smile, you’re on Candid Camera” ? or 60 Minutes? or the (I’m guessing) America’s Wall of Shame?
    Or say – “Don’t I know your wife? I was just talking to her on the phone and she thought she recognized your voice when you were discussing your ‘not smart enough’ co-worker.”

  154. ‘Not eating animals says something about a person?’ You bet it does. It says that a person is kind, compassionate, caring, and actually thinks about things. Which is more than I can say for those bozos.

  155. First time commenter, I simply couldn’t not say anything. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think what you did was wrong, we are all different people and has different ways of handling things. If they were around me this is what I would do. I would order a whiskey double neat and go up to them and say this. “I am a Sri Lankan born Canadian Vegetarian. I don’t own a house or a car and work for a bi-weekly pay cheque that puts a roof above my head and food on my table. But I wouldn’t change it for the world if being rich and having it all will turn me into a ignorant, cheating, non empathetic, wimpy, Jackass like you” Then I would down the whiskey and slam the glass between their Baileys.

  156. No, you should wish they were on your flight. So you could tell the cabin crew how drunk they are. The airlines are permitted to kick drunks off a flight.
    Too bad they didn’t each have a luggage tag visible with contact information that you could get an identity from.
    One approach is to begin a very loud conversation nearby (too bad you were alone) talking about how guys with shriveled privates get that way from eating too much meat, and they shirk from initiating affairs because they’re afraid of what their target would think.
    Or listen to them and laugh loudly saying ‘I never, ever have heard such stupidity. We Canadians will be ever so glad when you leave here. The average IQ in the airport will immediately double’.
    Or walk by with a smartphone and say ‘I can’t wait to post that recording on YouTube’.
    We once had play tickets with a group and we’d all gone to dinner together. There was a couple nearby (male/female) also having an outrageous conversation near us. We actually thought they were the best entertainment ever. We ran out of time for dessert, left the restaurant, but returned for dessert after the play. These two were still there and still carrying on. Almost better than the play…

  157. This reminds me of what happened when we met my son’s roommate his freshman year. He is four states away from me and I cried for most of the ride home thinking that he was going to be influenced every day by that kind of thinking. When I got home and my rational mind took over, I realized that my son could possibly be a good influence on the roommate. The upside is that the guy moved out midyear and my son got a nicer roommate. (My self control is not as good as yours–or else I’d had too little sleep. I did remark on one of his comments which silenced him for about a minute).

  158. Confronting directly needs to be done carefully for your own safety. I had a knife pulled on me in the break room at work because I politely but firmly objected to a coworkers racist language (I can’t even allude to the actual words online they were so foul). He had the knife concealed in an ankle strap. The moment I saw the knife I literally saw red and became so beyond angry I lost my sense of self preservation. I jumped up and dared the man to stab me saying I’d survive it and see him in jail where pigs like he belonged. I think the presence of another man in the break room was all that kept the idiot from doing so. His hands were shaking, the knife (8″ hunting type) reflecting light all over, and spit was drooling from his lips. I immediately marched into the manager’s office and reported the incident. “Tsk. Oh, is Joe carrying his knife again? We’ve told him not to do so at work.” was the response. End of story. No discipline. Not even a memo about watching language. Was he worth it?

  159. Other commentors have some great ideas! But I am glad you are not that Blogger. What are the chances his wife knits and reads your blog? But then again, what are the chances his boss knits and reads your blog. Because that would be kinda awesome.

  160. Too bad you didn’t video them and post it on YouTube. Maybe he wife would have seen it. No expectation of privacy when you’re in public, right?

  161. I have run into people like that, and wondered why they felt so entitled to BE jerks, and to be so loud about it as well. Confronting them only works in movies and on TV. I share your general dismay. But the thing that really struck me? Two big, important guys like that are drinking BAILEY’S?? Seriously??? That just cracks me up.

  162. I rather like Bailey’s, lovely in a cup of coffee or hot cocoa, but to get drunk on? Not.
    I’m not into confronting either, but if they had gotten on the same plane, I might of talked to one of the crew.

  163. The attitudes and rudeness are bad enough that I shake my head and wonder how they were raised. I’ll bet, though, that if you had posted thier photos on your blog, along with the converstion bits, they would brag and show it off to their friends. That makes it worse, somehow. : (

  164. I saw a funny cartoon in the paper one time. It was during the whole stink in the US about phone tapping. It had a guy walking down the street talking (LOUDLY, of course) on his cell phone about how his phone conversations were PRIVATE, and no one needed to listen to them. If you can’t keep your voice down in public (on the phone or not), you have forfeited your right to privacy. Take their picture, post their conversation. Maybe the poor woman married to the slob will hear about it from a friend and dump the loser.

  165. Ummm, pointy sticks in the same general vicinity as a couple of moronic jerks sounds like an “accident” waiting to happen…. Just saying.

  166. You are my favorite vegetarian Canadian. This carnivorous Midwesterner apologizes profusely for what were almost certainly weenies from the U.S. We’re not all like that. Some of us are knitters. 🙂 Or married to or related to knitters.

  167. Hey, guess what Stephanie….you COULD be “that blogger” and that’s what you could do. That’s better than getting heartburn over it…oh wait, I guess you couldn’t get heartburn because you’re one of THOSE PEOPLE (Canadian vegetarians). Well, after all, maybe YOU couldn’t do that, you’re too nice. I, on the other hand, am older than dirt, and so I can get away with it. Just tell me where they were headed!

  168. probably first and foremost, certain people should be banned from consuming alcohol EVER!! i was cringing right along with you… i have been in similar situations and it is SO awkward!!

  169. I find myself knitting in moments like that too, but then I worry that I’ve put all the anger boiling over inside me into the knitting and I don’t want to use it or give it away after that. Over thinking it I’m sure.

  170. Sigh. Though it will likely never happen, I’d like to take these guys you encountered out to work with me. Perhaps just one day on my route would give them some inner wisdom, but sadly, I doubt there’s help for boors like them.
    On Monday I encountered a dying man (I’m a hospice nurse) who is living in abject poverty. He had no heat and no electricity in his home (it’s cold here in Detroit). Somehow, I don’t think this is the way this man (who outlived his pension) imagined his life would be ending, nor that in some way,this hard working factory retiree had made his own death bed and now had to lay in it. Today is Thursday and I’ve still not been able to get this man and his multifactorial suffering off my mind. We are working hard as a team to have his utilities restored so at the least, he’ll have a warm and well lit home.

  171. On the plus side for humanity: An older gentleman just held the door open for me (my hands were very full)at the community center and he hoped that I would enjoy the nice fall day (it is beautiful). It was a lovely gesture as…the doors at the community center are automatic. 🙂 What a wonderful person!

  172. When my best friend was in college (many long years ago), she traveled to Japan to teach English for a semester. There was a girl the same age seated behind her, behaving similarly to the men you encountered, loudly expressing the inferiority of the Japanese and her own superiority. When she actually turned in her seat and placed her feet in the lap of the poor, stunned Japanese woman seated beside her, my friend turned around to say something…and, to her own complete shock, socked the girl in the face and broke her nose! She had no intention of doing it, didn’t even know she was doing it until it was over. (She is 5’3″, tiny, kind, and totally sweet.) The plane actually turned around in mid-air and returned to the airport. The strangest part was, when the police came on the plane and asked what had happened, the other passengers and crew insisted that the other girl had started it and swung at my friend first, and she was arrested and removed from the plane.
    Now, I’m not recommending this approach, and my friend felt horrible about it, but I’ll bet that girl never behaved like that again.

  173. What I long for is a pocket full of disposable tape recorders. I would like to tape some of those conversations, then walk by on my way out, drop the recorder on their table and push play. Of course I’m hoping that hearing themselves would be a learning experience rather than just another Media Moment. Sigh.

  174. First and foremost: At least they identify themselves. Its the stealth assholes you really have to watch out for. (Though I do agree that they should get a sign or something in case their mouths aren’t open at the time of introduction.)
    Secondly: I am an agressive person. Its a nature/trait thing and I’ve given up really fighting it. I do ask people who are being loudly ignorant to kindly keep their voices down. (Most recently, it was a couple of conductors on a train who I asked to please move their leering to another car if they couldn’t bring themselves to treat women around them like people because it was creeping me out.)
    3/4 of the time, the loud and ignorant depend on other people not speaking up and think that means that the whole world agrees with them. (Because surely, if they were saying anything the universe didn’t agree with *someone* would have said *something* by now, right?)
    The other 25% of the time, they can raise the asshole quotient and direct it as a specific, rather than general target. As long as you keep your temper and rationality, things usually go okay.
    In general, I leave drunks alone, though if I can I tell them they were being boorish assholes while they’re in the throws of the recovery hangover.
    Finally, in all honesty, reporting them to security as being a “possible threat” wouldn’t be lying.

  175. Well, on the plus side, you have sharp pointy objects that could totally be used to defend yourself and give those security freaks something to freak out about for once.

  176. I love Anne’s comment. I have noticed that the level of rude behavior has skyrocketed . Really those aliens out there must see how totally mean some people are and that often they reap rewards because they are mean . Glad to have people like you writing and noticing things. On another note loved your Powells visit, I scored three copies of your book for Christmas gifts and feel very blessed. Have a great retreat and now I may have to learn to spin.

  177. Stephanie you really should post their picture. They deserve it. And maybe their resulting humiliation ( because their family and friends would let them know about it ) would make them think twice about their views. These guys are obviously ignorant of the suffering of much of the rest of the world. If people don’t realize their way of thinking is wrong how can they change? And if my husband was contemplating an affair I would definitely want to know about.

  178. I am so with rams on this one. And I *am* the kind of person that would do that. Although that would likely be an entertaining episode, I hope they are not sitting near you on the plane. Grown men getting sloshed on Bailey’s? That tells me a lot. And when the turbulence hits, I would want you and your knitting to be far, far away from them revisiting all they imbibed while philosophizing about the world.

  179. I wish I were there. Not only would I be that person… I’d surreptitiously take a video on my phone and post it all over youtube, facebook AND my blog.

  180. Wow this is a headshaker, these guys seem totally useless to the human species! I am appalled at their behavior and totally in awe of your calm demeanor as I might have not had such self control and whacked them both over the head just to shut them up! geeez!

  181. Oh, please…if Karma is listening, let these guys both be sterile and unable to procreate.if they’re Americans..I apologize for my countrymen…sometimes the gene pool is a little shallow.

  182. I dunno…”HI, I’ve been sitting over there and have heard every word you guys have said. Just wanted you to know that I’m female, Canadian, vegetarian, and so smart I wouldn’t go near either one of you even if someone offered me a million loonies. Oh, that’s dollars to you boys. I’m also a very famous blogger and author, but I am too polite to publish anything about this. Because, you know, I’m Canadian. Ta, and best regards to your poor wife.”
    Of course, any male who would get drunk on Bailey’s is a lower life form anyway. Lower even than if they had said exactly the same things but had been drinking Scotch.

  183. Oh, and I forgot “Have raised over a million dollars for those poor folks you mentioned”, you could have slipped that in there someplace.

  184. Bailey’s? Seriously… BAILEY’S?? Is there a drink more girly-girly than Bailey’s? ha,ha! How sad that neither guy had the grace, decency or maturity to redirect the conversation to higher ground. It will all come back to bite them.

  185. Thank you, as always for your posts, Stephanie. I needed a smile today and your honesty and sense of humor did me a TON of good. :o)

  186. I’m with everyone above that thinks these men are completly hopeless and should quickly be forgotten. How sad that they will not experience this wonderful world with all its wonderful offerings with wonder! Knit On!

  187. Hey! Did you know that Free-Range Knitter is part of the Kindle Lending Library? Awesome!

  188. Oh so much to say.
    First of all, how can someone have a skinful and be a waste of skin at the same time? (karen, i am with you!) Rams and Presbytera, love you girls. You are two of the reasons why I always read the comments. I can agree with Presbytera but would really like to have seen the guys face if you had done what Rams suggested. Yarnhog: great story! ….and Harlot, you did the right thing. These two were not worth your time or effort.

  189. Ok, I let this cogitate overnight. If I’d commented on this at 1AM (drunk on Baileys, not!), I would have regretted it. As many have said here, Baileys? Seriously? St. Brendon’s is a much better Irish Cream! But to get drunk on it? OMG. Funny thing about narcissists, they don’t know when they’re shooting themselves in their arrogant, entitled, non-knitted-for, footsies.

  190. Tempting as it is, posting a picture would probably turn into one of those big Internet scandals, like happened in China (or was it Japan?) to the girl who let her dog poop on the subway…and the scandal would seriously detract from your knitting time.
    Anyway, it seems pretty obvious now where the Occupy Wall Street movement came from, doesn’t it? Jerks like that, being jerky to the rest of us.

  191. You could have posted their pictures on your blog, but no one would have recognized them. I say that because there is no way that anyone who is intelligent enough to read your blog would be stupid enough to have a relationship with such schmucks. We will forgive their relatives.

  192. Hopefully you (and by extension, they) aren’t sitting in the boarding area of your flight, because that would mean that you’d be stuck on a plane with them. They’d probably complain about the dangerous pointy sticks. So sorry that you had to endure that kind of garbage.

  193. As a very snarky, very not nice, meat-eating American…that fact that two dudes are hanging out in an airport lounge, getting full-shot off a ‘girl’ drink and complaining about how women won’t sleep with them…? I firmly belive in ‘to each his own’, but seriously? Just sayin’…

  194. Only once have I confronted a jerk. My defense is that I was stuck in a loooong line right in front of her at an airport and couldn’t get away. She was spouting racist crap about someone who’d left their car parked in front of the terminal, complaining that they were probably illegal (while speaking English with a noticeable Spanish accent), and I finally pointed out to her that for all she knew, their family could have been in the US for multiple generations, certainly longer than her — just because someone *looks* Hispanic in California doesn’t make them illegal, for heaven’s sake — and that we were all getting very sick of her racist, hateful remarks. To my delight, she actually shut up. I’m sure she didn’t change her attitudes one iota, but the rest of the people all around me suddenly got very friendly to me and I had lovely, pleasant conversations the rest of the way through the line.
    Sometimes speaking up has at least the effect of getting the offensive person to pipe down, which is, probably, the best we can hope for!

  195. Hey, they were right about one thing, though! Not eating animals DOES say “something” about a person 🙂 I happen to think it’s a good something.
    Getting drunk in an airport and speaking loudly, on the other had, also “says something about a person.” This one ISN’T a good something :/

  196. Are all Americans like this? We had 4 – 3 women and a guy – do this poolside on our Spanish holiday last week; they offended every nationality there, used bad language in front of children and seemed arrogantly oblivious to the fact that they were in public, not in the privacy of their apartment.

  197. You coulda started a conversation and then let slip that what you’re knitting is not a large sock but a willie warmer for your vegetarian Canadian hubby. That might shut them up.

  198. Oh boy. Congrats on sitting through it! I admire you – I myself am working on recognizing what I can and cannot change. I am not Canadian and I’m not a vegetarian, but those guys wouldn’t have liked me either.

  199. Stephanie – I am a huge fan. I really enjoy reading about your adventures – BUT – I really want to know why you do not visit all the large Canadian cities – you are Canadian after all. I want to know what barriers exist so that we can remove them and you will visit us in Winnipeg!

  200. I’m with Rams, too. Though I would have added taking a photo because you just can not believe running into him like this. Then post it along with her name…. People like that deserve every bit of uncomfortableness that comes their way.

  201. sheesh, what a pair of boneheads. better not to make any contact. They might be crazier than you think.

  202. Wow – maybe that is the solution to the similar attitudes and behavior I overhear from teenagers every day at the high school I work at. When and why did it become socially acceptable to be so uncivil?

  203. And they are MARRIED? I weep for the species.
    Seriously though, there’s nothing to be done but hope their children get a clue and don’t follow in daddy’s footsteps. I’m imagining some sort of knitting mission to their hometown…

  204. As Roger Rosenblatt said (editor at TIME magazine) in his book, Rules for Aging. “Just because someone is a jerk, doesn’t mean they will appreciate it when you point it out to them.” So I go with the keep knitting and keep silent approach. But I DID like the idea of introducing yourself as a friend of his wife…that is priceless.

  205. I was in a yarn shop, and some women were being really racist…yet they clearly didn’t think that they were. I’m still sorry I didn’t say something to them. But in *my* case, they’d have felt guilty if I had…and *stopped*. Those drunks? Unlikely. Although your fellow passengers might have applauded. That might have clued them in. If the other passengers didn’t….it might have gone poorly for you. I think you were in a no-win situation. Knitting was likely the best answer.

  206. I work with guys like this all the time. If we point out how offensive this stuff is, they look baffled. Amazing.

  207. This proves my 11 year old’s theory that: ” You have to be smart to know how stupid you are.”

  208. Dear Harlot, you should be grateful you do not have a President or a politician like these jerks. We, Italians, actually have one president (no capital letters here) and the majority of politicians exactly like these two (I do not have a word for that). And believe me, we do not deserved it.

  209. I’m sitting here wondering how much Bailey’s it takes to get drunk. And really – you should have taken the picture!

  210. Im glad you werent rude back to them it would have only left you with a sick nasty feeling that
    not even knitting could fix.

  211. Ha, ha, ha. Joke’s on them Steph, I just posted this to my facebook page and I think everyone else should do the same thing in the name of education and awareness! We’ll out their ilk one link at a time. You ROCK Girlfriend, aplolgies from the lower 48 who seem to spawn this lifeform despite our best efforts to eradicate… er… educate it out of them. I concur, “you can’t fix stupid”.

  212. Dear Stephanie: thank you for being so awesome. For the past few minutes reading your heartbreakingly humorous blog, I totally forgot that my mom called a little earlier to tell me she has lung cancer. You turn to knitting in distress, I turn to your blog.
    And soon, I’ll be turning to knitting, too.

  213. Wow. That was a truly insane conversation you overhead. Kind of surreal just reading about. I kept thinking, “Is this for real?” If I had been there I would have thought, “Am I in the Twilight Zone?” Or, “Is this a Seinfeld episode? I agree that confronting them would serve no purpose. I find that confronting morons about being morons usually just makes ME feel worse. Much better to quietly ridicule them in public.

  214. I read to my roommate what those jerks said about poor people not needing as much…whatever it was she was drinking landed a good five feet away. From her nose.

  215. Was on a train with a future executive for a local Portland company, bad mouthing the job and his soon-to-be employer. Outloud, on his cell phone. He was traveling to an event for said company to meet and greet.
    Someone on the train car asked him to please obey the rules and step out to the vestibule between cars while speaking on his phone (incredibly loudly.
    After he left, one gentleman then volunteered that he worked for this company and was traveling to the same event. He was sure the future manager of the excutive would like to know what the new employee thought of his new job and co-workers.
    Karma was served.

  216. I have a mantra for situations like this. “I will not argue with idiots.” I chant it under my breath, but have been known to tell total strangers within the vicinity, while pointing towards the idiots.
    Robert Heinlein said “You can’t teach a pig to sing, it wastes your time and annoys the pig.” Which led to my mantra… which only works part of the time.
    Of course, there was the time I protested at a Nazi Rally with a sign that said “Better to be silent and be thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.” I could tell who got that by the people laughing.

  217. Totally believable. Horrifying and tragic, but believable. These are the “Power of Pride” types that advocate “nuke ’em ’til they glow and shoot ’em in the dark” . . . I grew up surrounded by this mindset, the best that American education has to offer the most folks: childcare for working parents, but very little training in good thinking skills or any real effect on bigotry, etc . . .

  218. Rest easy: you are not the same species. Have you seen Men In Black? Giant Cockroaches in people skins. I’m sure agents are hunting them down right now.
    I wish I could have made it out to the book tour. I am on the wrong continent though, unless you have stops planned in Brazil (which I doubt); I went into a store here that sells yarn, and they had a)polypropelene yarn (yes, really) and b) 8 brands of mercerized cotton in various colours and weights. Its like going to buy juice and finding 19 varieties of orange juice and 2 cans of V8, and nothing else.
    I will have to stock up in Canada at Christmas time. And get your book.

  219. Man, I have been ruminating over this post for a few days. My first thought is I wish the guy would screw the not smart woman so she would tell the wife. She may be doing the wife a real favor. Maybe thats just the leverage the wife needs to exit a bad marriage. My other thought is doesn’t it make Joe seem like a SUPER STAR. It sure reminded me to be thankful for the man in my life. I was married to a wonderful husband and father for 28 years and I lost him to cancer in ’06, and then the universe sent me another wonderful man, who lets me knit all the time and never complains about my stash size.

  220. It is so hard to know if speaking up or staying silent is the best course. I try to speak up if it is safe to do so whenever racists rant, that kind of stupidity shouldn’t be tolerated publicly. Their comment on the poor should have been enough reason for a photo posted to reddit with a nice story of their conversation.
    People like those drunk guys just make me more grateful for my husband’s intelligence and morality.

  221. Hi Stephanie,
    This is unrelated to this particular blog. After your comments about Cottage Craft Woolens, I ordered some yarn and a pattern. That was October 6. I have not received my yarn yet, and the phone number on their website is wrong. Sent an email last week – no response. I know this is not your responsibility, but if you have a correct phone number, I will try calling again.
    Love your blog, and thank you for whatever you can do.

  222. I’ve been in a similar situation to yours. In an airport with my two small children in tow, two men in our boarding area were having a similar discussion. When I finally had enough, I went over to them with a charming grin and informed them that they really needed to know that their cone of silence was malfunctioning and their conversation was being eavesdropped on by everyone in the area. Since no one really WANTS to eavesdrop, maybe you’d like to lower your voices. Blank stares. Total silence. Even on the flight.

  223. Um, what is that right above me?
    Anyway, “Real Men” American, Canadian or what ever nationality, do not drink and act this way.

  224. Talk about Ugly Americans! (I know you didn’t say they were Americans but, sadly, I can’t imagine anyone else behaving so boorishly.)

  225. LOL. I am in two of the camps here:
    1. Bless their hearts…
    2. Post their photos to illustrate this blog…I like the Find Waldo suggestion…
    3. You can always make amends later for your momentary lapse in compassion and self-control.

  226. What Rams said.
    Ah. American Republicans in their natural habitat.
    Ya know, it never hurts to lean over and say, “after overhearing the content of your pointedly non-private conversation, nobody in their right mind would sleep with either one of you,” just after you’ve collected your things and stood up. Then turn your back, hold your head high and sweep out of there like a gang moll leaving a private eye’s office.
    They probably didn’t even tip the bartender. In fact, I am certain of it.

  227. P.S. — For the disconcerted Bailey’s lovers out there: it’s not about the Bailey’s. Realy. In my bartending days I learned that some people ACTUALLY BELIEVE that Bailey’s smells like candy, not alcohol, on your breath, and that you can get wasted without being detected.
    As in, “I’m drinking Bailey’s tonight so if I have too much the cops won’t be able to tell I was drinking.” Yes, people actually say that to bartenders.
    Ergo, they are stupid, not because they drink Bailey’s, but because they believe that they magically will neither smell like alcohol nor otherwise appear to be impaired if they do.

  228. Oh, this was too funny, but what really made me laugh the most was the comment about the aliens listening, and whether or not they should warn us about the comet. Seriously, if you were going to say anything to these guys, that would have been the best thing ever! thanks to those two, the aliens think we are idiots, and now we are all doomed.

  229. Having to remain silent while arrogant clods spew their ignarance is one of the hardest forms of restraint. That is why I no longer attend my husband’s family affairs. My family is beautifully blended and compassionate, so I do not condone predjudice of any sort. I love you, Yarn Harlot!! Years ago, I was on a poncho binge, and there you were!! I enjoy “meeting” you again!!♥♥♥

  230. HEY!!! I’m an American Republican….sheesh people, let’s avoid putting everyone in a group in a box, shall we?
    I’d like to say that this self- respecting Republican would never get drunk on Bailey’s. It’s a sissy drink. If they’d have been drinking whiskey, I might have some respect.

  231. Don’t be so sure they AREN’T management. I’d agree they aren’t HR (who are trained to be politically correct).
    Had never heard the urban legend that Bailey’s can’t be detected. (That would say something about their IQs, too, if that was why they were drinking it.) Can’t handle floofy syrupy drinks, myself.
    Agree with the other peeve about people having their inane cell phone conversations on public transit!

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