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Friday, 18 October 2019

Old enough to know better...

I went to a party the other day, and it was divided into clusters from the hosts life. There were a fair few in our cluster, so while I spent most of the night with those I knew, I did strike up conversations with others, as we were all there to celebrate a milestone birthday with the host.

At one point in the night, a song I liked came on, so I went to the small group of five that was dancing, and announced I was joining them, even though they were all strangers to me. A few seconds later, the three women whispered to each other, looked at me and left. It was shockingly rude and frankly for 50 year olds, infantile and weird. I turned to the two men who remained dancing (one of them obviously feeling very awkward about whether to stay or go, and one too drunk to care) and apologised for bringing the vibe down. The drunk guy just shrugged and smiled. We danced as if it hadn't happened and then when the new song came on, I went back to my people...

WHO DOES THAT?

I told a friend and her first response was to shriek in a horrified squeal 'That's so high school?!'
And it was. The weirder part, I wasn't trying to talk to them, I literally was just coming to dance. So it seemed an excessive show of poor manners, to prove some point that I clearly missed.

The night before I went to Jungle Giants, where I was easily 30 years older than everyone else. I went with a friend and we merrily danced away. At one point, I noticed three women, maybe 20, looking at me. One was grinning and possibly copying my moves. I wasn't 100% sure if she was making fun of me, as she was smiling at me in a very friendly manner, so it was difficult to read what was happening. Her friend then gave me that look. It's a look I get at lots of concerts where I don't belong. It's not nasty, but there is a patronising air. It's a look that says "Aren't you cute?!" Cute in the sense of a sweet old lady. Betty White cute. The mimicking was an inclusive move, not one with malice. It is something I'm getting used to. It has occasionally had the words 'I hope I still go out like you when I'm old' and other such variations, that are meant to be compliments but are shattering reminders that your outside doesn't match how you feel inside...and yet I'd still take that over the small minded women at the party.

It's a sad reflection of society in a lot of ways. The older we get, the more focused on our 'lot' we become. We're not interested in sharing with the greater community, nor open to new people. I have a lot of faith in the youth of today. I hope they don't follow our bad example.

To borrow from Kate Forsyth, dancing is common ground that allows 'people to connect, despite all our defences and all our differences'.

And who wouldn't want to connect in the easiest and most instantaneous way possible?

"Inclusion is a way of thinking, a way of being, and a way of making everyone feel they belong" 
(not attributed to anyone? If you know, let me know).

Linking off topic for  #KCACOLS #GlobalBlogging #TwinklyTuesday and #DreamTeam





24 comments:

  1. Wow that is exceptionally rude! I don't know why people can't just be friendly, there's definitely no need for that type of behaviour.

    Di from Max The Unicorn

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    1. It was so weird. If I was a different person, I would have been upset and felt bad about myself. It did bug me but more in the way I was astounded adults could behave so poorly....

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  2. I've met several new people this year who are older than me and they initiated the conversation. I hope you meet nice people at your next outing.#lifethisweek

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  3. Ummm who does that? That's just what you do at parties when a good song comes on - you dance with whoever is dancing. Yep, high school behaviour.

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    1. What Jo said, Lydia. People are so rude.

      Just keep on being you!

      SSG xxx

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    2. I presume they would have done it to anyone they didn't know - not me specifically, so I didn't take it personally. Really odd for adults tho....anyway, if the young 20 somethings want to dance with me, even to be funny, I'll take that as a win. Ha!

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  4. That does sound like very weird behaviour and quite childish in the extreme. I'm in my late 50s now and enjoy mixing with a wide range of age groups too, we can do anything and it's their loss if they don't include you. #lifethisweek

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  5. Ugh, I'm usually pretty much okay at going to events alone and walking up to strangers and admitting I know no one and breaking into their conversation. In fact if someone looks like they're alone I'll pull them into our conversation etc

    But I remember when I first moved to Hervey Bay to went to a business drinks thing where I knew no one and it seriously felt like each group I approached tolerated my presence but little else. No one tried to engage me and I found myself moving onto the next group and had a sense of their relief once I'd moved on. I stayed away from those events for ages as it'd given me a really bad sense of not-belonging. I suspect it kinda reflected the insular groups that exist here.

    So sorry you had that experience. But keep dancing!!!

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    1. At my 50th, an old school friend came from Newcastle and knew no one and she said after "Your friends are so nice, I walked in and before I had time to even feel awkward, someone told me how great I looked and led me over to a group and introduced me" (it was fancy dress). I was so proud of my friends for doing that (but my friends are awesome, so of course they did that). I try to do the same. (I've actually written a post on this that's in the pipeline). I'm always amazed when people see you alone and make it clear they don't want you to join in....

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  6. Those ladies at the party sound like the worst kind of childish - it's definitely them and not you! Keep calm and keep on dancing!

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  7. I have definitely realised who my true friends are single suffering a massive stroke that has left me disabled #twinklytuesday@_karendennis

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    1. I am very sorry to hear but I'm glad you have some that have stuck by you - treasure them!

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  8. We always say kids can be cruel, but the fact of the matter is, it's not kids it's people of all ages! Not all people of course, many are absolutely lovely, but there's always the odd few. I'm so glad you carried on dancing and didn't let them win at their childish little game x

    #TwinklyTuesday

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  9. What a terrific writer!!! Thank you for sharing 💙

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  10. Oh dear. You are so NOT the old(er) lady and you have such a joy for life. How rude. Honestly, that is all it is. I read Deborah's comments and I know how hard it's been, where I have tried, to 'fit in' to the groups I tried on the Central Coast. From snobbery to a standard that is not me so my volunteering anywhere is where I am most comfy. On-line and in person back in Sydney. Thank you for linking up for Life This Week. Next wee's optional prompt is: 43/51 Your Favourite Book As a Child 28/10/19 BUT I am not following it. I am introducing my Daily Gratitude Instagram Challenge running for the 30 days of November, ending on the last day which is my 70th B'day !! Denyse.

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  11. At my wedding, some of my husband's extended family was joining in and dancing enthusiastically with the 'young kids' music. I thought it was so awesome that they were having the time of their life. None of us young people even questioned it, probably because that is a common occurrence in Hawai'i culture. Sad to think those nasty ladies walked off the dance floor, they'll regret that when they're 'old' and forced to sit at home. You just keep on dancing! #DreamTeam

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  12. Some people are unnecessarily rude. Keep being you! #twinklytuesday

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  13. That sounds like very odd behaviour to me - it's their problem not yours! #DreamTeam

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  14. Its a shame that there are so many people who feel a need to try and make themselves feel better by bringing down others. One of the nice things about getting older I've found is that its a lot easier to not give a you know what about those sorts #KCACOLs

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  15. Oh my goodness! That is shocking. If I were them, I'd be welcoming another person to the dance floor to add to the atmosphere! #KCACOLS

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  16. Defnitely old enough to know better! I would expect my children to show more respect than they did! Thanks for linking up with #globalblogging

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  17. That's so rude. I really don't know how people are able to do that to someone and not feel completely ashamed of themselves. It's such childish behaviour. #kcacols

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  18. It was an incredibly rude thing to do but it doesn't altogether surprise me. Nor does it surprise me that it was the women who did it and not the men. Women can be so mean (irrespective of their age apparently). It is such a close-minded attitude and very disappointing. But the best thing is not to let it stop you. It is only by displaying your attitude and approach to life that others may learn from your example and hopefully begin to change theirs #KCACOLS

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  19. That was really rude. Some people are so strange. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next time

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