atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#3897: EMM was right, and I was wrong.

EMM is someone I was friends with. We were no longer friends after we had a falling out in 1990.

In 1995, he told Sailor V that until Sailor V started to show up to gatherings on time (ie when he said he would be there) he should not bother coming by.

I--still butthurt after the events of 1990--took Sailor V's side in the whole imbroglio, especially since Sailor V (as he always does) presented himself as the victim. EMM was a big meany-mean-head, because Sailor V had Crohn's and can't help it....

You know, not that I ever saw him try. Instead of thinking, "Okay, I want to be there by three, so I really ought to go to bed before 5 AM, and get out of bed before noon, so I can get up and have all my BS dispensed with before people start calling me and asking me where the hell I am...."

The progression of events was always the same, without variation: Sailor V would agree to meet at such-and-such time. Then the day of the event, he'd call perhaps an hour ahead, complaining that his gut kept him up really late the night before and he hadn't been able to sleep, but he was getting into the shower now and "I should be ready in about an hour." If you called him an hour later, invariably he was still in the shower; an hour after that he was usually "almost ready" but needed more time in the bathroom because of his Crohn's.

So perhaps two to three hours after the appointed time, he would finally arrive. It didn't matter what time you set, either; 1 PM meant Sailor V would arrive at 4, 4 PM meant he'd arrive at 7, 7 PM meant he might arrive by 10:00 if you didn't get fed up and tell him to stay home. It finally got to the point that I'd invite him over at 5 PM with the expectation that he wouldn't be here before 8; the last time, I actually wrote all that down and was not surprised that I'd successfully predicted the outcome. "Invited [Sailor V] to be here around 5, but he won't be here before 7:30", I wrote once the phone call was over, and in fact when the day came I was wrong--on the optimistic side!--by half an hour. Close enough, though.

WTF, you get enough examples, any dumbass can see a pattern--even me.

I mean, if Sailor V's tardiness were actually caused by a medical condition which he himself says "sometimes" is not as big a problem, then random chance alone should have resulted in him arriving on time to a gathering. But he was never on time. Not once. (Forget being early. Jesus.)

EMM, in 1995, had finally had enough of that shit. He recognized the pattern long before I did--quite literally decades before--and put a stop to it. It's really not hard to understand, particularly when you stop to consider how rude it is to be that inconsiderate for other people's time. It was never a case where Sailor V would call someone and say, "Hey, I couldn't sleep, so I'm staying home today." Oh, no. It was always, "I know I'm going to be late, but I'm still going to take my hour-long Hollywood shower and make everyone wait for me, because my gut." Instead of, you know, maybe taking the shower while he "can't sleep" anyway, and then the next day just washing his hair and such. Or if that wasn't possible, perhaps taking a normal 20-minute shower like normal people do and actually trying to hurry instead of just claiming he was hurrying. (I say "claim" because it never took any less time for him to get ready when he claimed to be hurrying as when he was taking his time.)

The final nail in the coffin came last year, when Mrs. Fungus (then Lemonzen) and I were going on what turned out to be a date, and Sailor V wanted to tag along. "We're going to be leaving here around 1 PM," I told him, "and you've told me about a thousand times that you can't get out of the house before 3 PM in any event."

"I can do it sometimes," he replied.

"Sometimes"? SOMETIMES? If he actually could have done it "sometimes" then why the hell did he tell me he couldn't? Why had he never managed to do it before--in our 20 years of active association!--if he could do it "sometimes"? Every time there had been something that needed doing--such as when he needed to go to the SS office to get a new SS card--he claimed he absolutely could not get out of the house before 3 PM. (SS office actually closes at 5, but it closes its doors at 3:30 because the bureaucrats want to leave at 5 PM and can't if there are people waiting.)

If he could do it "sometimes" then random chance alone would have led to him being on-time at least once, but it had never, ever happened. He never told me, "Hey, I slept like a rock last night and had no trouble this morning!" It seems as if he never actually manages to sleep when he knows there's something going on the next day, but rather than adjust his behavior to account for that he goes right ahead and does as he pleases.

Sailor V being able to leave the house before 3 PM "sometimes", I realized, meant "whenever there was something Sailor V really didn't want to miss". And you know what that means?

EMM was right about him, and I was wrong.

I don't actually believe that Sailor V would have been ready by 1 PM on that day, even if Mrs. Fungus (then Lemonzen) and I had decided to include him. If we'd agreed to let him come, he wouldn't have been ready before 2 PM at the earliest, and if we'd threatened to leave without him there would have been a "Can't you just...?" complaint from him.

"Can't you just...?" is his rallying cry. It makes it sound like what he's asking for isn't such a great burden, and you're being an asshole for refusing. Like about this time last year, when Mrs. Fungus and I wanted to queue for level 80 heroics in WoW. Sailor V's highest level toon was 75 and he wanted to group with us, but the dungeons were 80th level dungeons. He wanted us to group with him and help him level to 80 so we could all do it, but I was having none of that because I knew it would take FOR-F-ING-EVER. You can't, in an hour or so, add five levels at that end of the experience scale. The first time I got a toon to 80 it took me most of a day to get there from 79.

Sailor V ended up doing randoms with others...and managed 76th by the time Mrs. Fungus had to call it a night. (It ended up taking him three or four days to get his toon to 80th.) "Can't you just help me get 80th level? It won't take that long!" Yeah.

He does this kind of thing to everyone, and people let him get away with it--for a while--because he knows he can get a certain amount of sympathy from them by telling his sad tales about his gut, his mom, his brother, and his awful living conditions. Everything in his life is so terrible, and none of it is ever his fault, and that's why he can't get out of the house before 3 PM (except, apparently, "sometimes") and that's why he's never going to have any kind of life.

But people get tired of accommodating him. When you see someone do nothing but make excuses for his actions with complaints about his medical condition and his family--and doesn't try to overcome anything, simply claiming "I can't" like a lazy 7-year-old--you get sick and tired of it, and you feel as if you're being taken advantage of. For example, he was first diagnosed with Crohn's in the 1980s; it's not exactly a surprise to him that his gut is a mess--yet every time a meeting is arranged, he never, never, ever anticipates having gut trouble, nor does he ever adjust his plans or behavior to account for the possibility. It's like he's thunderstruck by it: "I was going to go to bed last night and get up at noon, but--shazam!--my gut blew up and I couldn't sleep! I can't believe it! It's like I have Crohn's or something!"

People get tired of the bullshit. EMM got tired of it in 1995, and he was right to.

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