Psychos don’t like being caught out

Further to my recent posts on office psychos, I’m still thinking through my Unified Theory of Global Dickheads. I’m sure that’s a Nobel Prize in the making. According to several studies I’ve read, about 1 in 100 people are full on psychopath/sociopaths and 1 in 20 suffer from diagnosable Anti-Social Personality Disorder. My own unscientific observations lead me to believe about 1 in 10 people are just jerks
I think that the biggest difference between a pychopath and a jerk is that a psychopath can’t change and a jerk doesn’t want to change. Jerks behave in ways that normal humans find objectionable. Their cunning approach is to be so obnoxious that we either have to let them have their way or essentially fight fire with fire – be obnoxious right back.
The thing is, if you’re a decent human, you don’t want to spend much time being obnoxious. It actually feels bad. While it’s worth shouting down a jerk every now and then, they like to put us in positions where our lives will essentially be miserable if we retaliate.  I’ve noticed this behaviour more and more lately.

This behaviour is far too widespread to be limited to the people who are statistically likely to have Anti-Social Personality Disorder.  This is where my theory on the preponderance of jerks comes from.  I think being a jerk is pretty much learned behaviour – they see that when they’re a colossal jerk, people often let them get their own way just to shut them up.

But you know what?  Jerks really hate it when you call them out for being jerks.  It’s actually fun to watch them squirm but they’ll rarely admit they were at fault.  Just today I was on a really crowded tram.  So crowded in fact that when I got on I basically couldn’t move far past the doorway.  That didn’t bother me too much because I wasn’t staying on for very long.

Each stop at least one person would get on and/or off which involved some creative squirming away for me and a few other to accommodate the people who were entering/leaving.  Finally, we approached my stop and I stood by the door waiting for the tram to stop.  A woman who wanted to get off as well evidently decided she didn’t want to wait for the door to open and shoved past me while the tram was still moving.  She actually elbowed me in the stomach!

As I got off the tram behind her I decided to communite my displeasure and the following exchange took place:

ME: Yeah, thanks for that.

SHE: I needed to get off.

ME: So did I, why the hell did you elbow me in the stomach deliberately?

SHE: You wouldn’t get out of the way.

ME: The tram hadn’t stopped, I couldn’t get out of the way.

SHE: You shouldn’t have been in the way.

ME: There was nowhere else to stand.  Besides, like I said, I was waiting to get off too.

SHE: I didn’t know that, you were just in the way.

ME: Well, here’s a novel idea – try saying “Excuse me” before elbowing me in the stomach!

SHE: And I suppose you would have moved if I’d said that.

ME: No, I would have told you I was getting off at this stop.

SHE: So, I was meant to just wait behind you?


Actually, I may have said “fuck” more times than that.  For some reason, the conversation ended awkwardly at that point.



Filed under General Angriness

15 responses to “Psychos don’t like being caught out

  1. This woman’s arrogant selfishness is indictive of rude behavior everywhere. Lately I’ve wondered if the world was always like this and we just never heard about it, and are only hearing about it now because of the Internet, cell phones, media etc.? Or is this some new virus of apathy where people who were prone to being jerks anyway have suddently decided they just don’t give a fuck anymore? I’m glad you spoke up to her. Even if she didn’t let on to you, she’ll probably think before pulling such a stunt again.

    As a parent, what I find disturbing — and you’re a parent also, so I’m interested in your opinion on this — is wondering if I’ve done the right thing by raising my kids to be considerate and polite. Have I done them a disservice by not teaching them to be an even bigger jerk than anyone they may encounter in life? I guess that secretely I hope they haven’t listened to me, or that I’ve successfully sent the double message to be nice first, and if that doesn’t work, go into self-preservation mode.

  2. Psychos are everywhere. They suck balls.

  3. arrogant jerk behaviour is rampant, but that doesn’t make it right. mobile phones and crackberries have just made it worse…politeness and consideration are civilised behaviours, most people love them. those who don’t deserve all the f bombs you care to drop 😉

  4. I suspect I’m a bit like you, Mr. Angry–I can take just about any sort of rude behavior and hold my tongue (well, most of the time). Intentional, rude, physical contact, though, will almost certainly get a response from me.

  5. To quote… well, me actually…. “I fucking HATE people….”

  6. E0157H7

    In the area that I live there is a man that exemplifies being a dickhead. He has it down to an art. He is a dickhead in the way that a Zen master is calm. If he hits a red light at an intersection, he cuts into the shoulder of the road, drives down it into the intersection, makes a right turn, makes a u-turn in the lane the he turns in to, and then makes another right turn, thusly bypassing the red light. Of course, driving like this is at least a few different kinds of illegal, but the traffic light camera won’t get a picture of him, so it’s all fine since he will get away with it. All of this saves him perhaps a minute, or as little as fifteen seconds. He does not care that his driving is putting others at risk, he is in a hurry. He drives a large black SUV riding high on after-market suspension. My proposed solution to people like this is machine gun nests in the roofs of our vehicles. Examples must be made.

  7. bigstarlet

    Obviously, she had to be first off the tram. :p

    I wouldn’t say that this is psychotic. Abhorrently self-centered, perhaps. I’ll admit, as a youngster, having done this sort of thing on occasion. Karmic payback, however, is a bitch…

  8. DOA

    Never a camera around when you need one…

    E0157H7: machine gun nests in the roofs of our vehicles? Don’t be absurd…
    We need rocket launchers.

  9. Oh, I do not miss the crowded buses of the big city. haha!

    Here’s to slow moving, seats available all the time and drivers who generally wait for you to sit down before starting to drive again. As for the latter, if they did begin to move you would likely fall on your ass as the roads are narrow, hilly and winding here.

  10. Hmm, my previous attempt to comment didn’t seem to get through. Here it is.

    Most people have this sheep mentality. What she did, she probably picked up from the people around her. She doesn’t know exactly why she did it, just that it’s normal to do so. She might have realised that she was being rude only when you told her in such a direct way. However, my best bet is that she’s going to end up joining the herd again once she forgets about the encounter.


  11. Wendy: People have always been like this – I am actually planning a piece on that topic 🙂 And regarding kids, mine have been taught to be very polite but I think the second important thing is encouraging confidence so they don’t get pushed around!

    Range: yes and yes

    Vett: I had a rant about rude phone users in the past – they really bug me.

    Kyklops: the physical contact thing must be a bit of a challenge with the crowds in japan.

    Gruntski: I’m with you!

    E0157H7: Dickhead or insnae? It’s a fine line.

    Bigstarlet: yeah, I’d classify her as the anti-social personality disorder type rather than full blown.

    DOA: I like your creative thinking with the rocket launchers

    Jessica: There is something to be said for a quiet lifestyle.

    ChocolateFan: They’re sheep, I’m an electric prod.

  12. thegirlfromtheghetto

    I’m just sick of society. People have become so self-centered they don’t realize what a-holes they’ve become. Yesterday, I was forced to kick a box of shoes across an aisle in DSW because an idiot girl was whining to the sales lady and her boyfriend for over 10 minutes on “how come the shoes aren’t available in a size 8.” Of course, they 3 of them were blocking the entire aisle and her purse and random boxes of shoes were everywhere. When I did it, she realized what an idiot she was, and stopped whining. So I felt justice was served. Boy, after reading this I realize I sound nuts, ha ha ha …

  13. ghettogirl: I feel your pain. I find that hating people before I even meet them saves time.

  14. carefullycackling

    I was returning a gift to Target once and there was a long line ahead of me at the ‘customer service desk.’ A minute passed and a petite elderly woman with a big package stepped behind me. But she was sort of not standing directly in the queue; she was also leaving a slight unconscious gap between us, very slight, she just seemed very timid. Suddenly, this BIG DUDE with slicked, spiky hair, mesh shorts, a tank top, topped off with a smug look on his face, stepped right in front of her. I had been half-turned and noticed this and politely told him that he cut someone off, someone that he didn’t notice. Boy did he give me THE STINK EYE! And from the look on his face I could tell that his entire day just took a nosedive. People are not assertive because they are scared and people take advantage of that unknowingly with their ignorance and inability to pay attention to the world around them. =)

  15. Nikki

    OMG! This is so funny! I got tears. Thanks.

    Quite a WTF moment. Amazing she defended her behaviour. “Sorry” would have been so much easier. It’s amazing how so many people just lack simple common decency. Don’t even have to be particularly polite, just not be a fucking idiot. It’s not even a matter of intelligence, just a serious lack of common sense. I don’t think ‘psychos’, who can’t change, necessarily lack such basic common sense.

    Public transport can bring out the worst in people, people start acting like they are invisible in a crowded place. Sometimes makes me feel like shouting. “Hello! I can see you! I know what you’re up to! Yes, I mean YOU!”.

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