Point/Counterpoint: Looking At Me

in Editorial & Opinion

Stop Looking at Me

by Your Friendly Neighborhood Misanthrope

I don’t understand looking at other people while you’re walking. Look, I get it if you’re walking with a person and you guys start up a conversation, but to look at someone you don’t know and whose face you’re not talking at, especially if you’re walking past each other, is utterly bizarre. Why would you look at a stranger’s face? What’s to gain? Are you checking to see if you know the person in hopes of saying hello to a friend? Why? Why not just wait until you normally see them? It’s obvious you both have places to go, otherwise you wouldn’t be walking, so why eternally try to find friends when the risk of making strangers feel awkward is so much more likely?

What bothers me the most about being stared at by the unknown is the split-second panic I experience thinking “Holy rusted metal, Batman, I must know that person from something, otherwise their eyes wouldn’t be so far bored into my skull, but from what!?” This terror is accentuated by the fact that I am remarkably terrible at remembering people’s names, faces, voices, etc. Really the only thing that sticks in my mind about people is whether or not they’ve seen me naked which is, you guessed correctly, not a lot of people. In short, if you look at random people’s faces and you’re not a whore, you’re more jerk-like than Jamaican chicken.

I never had this problem until I moved out to New York, so maybe it’s an east coast thing. Maybe people on the west side evolved to not look strangers in the face because of the high probability of “getting cut.” So maybe we’re the weird ones, but I think in this scenario, weird is good. There’s no good reason to be friendly to people you don’t know, if that’s why you’re staring at everyone you pass by. Think about it: how do you know they’re not a rapist? How do you know they don’t kill people for a living? I mean, I don’t know about you, but I could never tell my grandma I smiled at a customer service rep.

And if you do actually do it because you’re looking for someone you know, stop it. You’re just making us lonely rapists antsy.


Start Looking At Me

by Your Salty Suburban Egomaniac

So why in the world are so many people here so afraid of making a new connection? When I’m waltzing down campus, I make it a point to stare every fresh face dead in the eyes to assert my utter dominance, and you know what confounds me? Nobody looks back! How am I supposed to inflate my sky-high sense of self when I can’t get a single soul to show me that weak glimmer of inadequacy that flirts about their irises? Now keep in mind, I never smile or show any semblance of warmth when I’m staring down that individual in the graphic tee. That would be too easy, that would make it seem like I eat sunflowers and puke rainbows and that I think organic granola is actually a digestible entity.

So the next time you see me, one of the stone-faced students looking sensually into your eyes, be sure to know that I do not know you, I probably have not had sex with you, I don’t have any friends so you can’t be one of them, and I just want to see how much better I am than you.

So look at me, for I am fabulously impressive. And I need material for later, when I start whacking it in front of a mirror, admiring myself while shouting, “JIMMY’S SO TALENTED, JIMMY’S SO SMART, JIMMY’S SO SUCCESSFUL, JIMMY’S GOING PLACES IN LIFE!”

I wonder what it’s like to have friends. But I have me. And I am majestic. Start looking at me.