February 22, 2011

The Day I Got Bullied by an Old Fart who hates Bloggers

Who is a Bully?

Bully. -noun. a blustering, quarrelsome, overbearing person who habitually badgers and intimidates...people - defined by dictionary.com

I recently traded posts with my good bloggy friend Aparna of Parentella covering the topic of bullying which unintentionally reincarnated a sad memory of one incident I had not too long ago. One that totally changed my entire perspective on bullying. One that was totally unexpected. One I shall never forgetI was bullied. Yes I was. Not by a kid { thank heavens! } but by a lady old enough to be a grandma. And you want to know what's so horrific about it? Well, I was bullied in front of my six year old kid... 

You're probably asking, "how could someone do that?" I have no clue either. What I didn't understand then was why a seemingly decent-looking individual can defy the law of decency and moral values just to rule supreme above all. Up to this day, I still could not shake my disbelief on the fact that a lady, old enough to be a grandma who I expected should know better, turned out to be a total bully! She was utterly obnoxious, no self-control and completely never minded the fact that she was displaying such monstrosity to me, in front of a young child. My child... {Congratulations you old fart, you just succeeded in showing my child what a grown-up bully is like! I hope you didn't think it was lovely because it. was. not.}

The Bullying.
I was invited to attend the exclusive pre-screening of the movie Life as we know it {yeah ironic, no?}. In a hope to avoid the chaos and crowd, I went to the theater early and fortunately were ushered inside an hour early than scheduled. Plenty of time to get a six year old child bored {How she ended up going with me is a story on its' own so we'll skip the details on that, shall we?}.

To cure her boredom and maintain my sanity, I gave her my iPad to play with while I snapped a couple of souvenir pictures of the seats that bore my name, with my phone. Oh boy! the minute the iPad lit up and I, snapping the photos, the "monster in disguise" seating right behind me started growling at me! She was grumbling and protesting my use of such gadgets. What shocked me was that I just exchanged a friendly chat with her and her husband before I did any of that. I should have seen the warning signs when I overheard her mouthing expletives when we were settling in our seats and her saying "no one better not make a mistake get in my way tonight because I'm not feeling nice at all" to her husband.

Now take note, most of the people inside were using their phones but she decided I was her prime target. She was airing her pure dislike of me to her husband and another lady friend that joined them and hurling ugly comments intentionally loud enough for me to hear. I shot back at her a few times but that did not stop her. My daughter was getting agitated by her badgering. I went and reported her to the person in charge of the event who told me that I was allowed usage of said gadgets before the movie starts and to report back if she continues badgering me. I went back and confronted her with the information which of course was met with hostile attitude but got her off of my case.

Now it gets better. Not accepting defeat, she too, went to the person in charge and apparently gathered information on who I was as I later found out. As she was going back to her seat, she loudly announced to her lady friend sitting next to her saying ~  "yeah, she's a blogger alright", condescendingly. I can only assume she was a journalist from the way she was describing what she would write about having someone like me ~ a pre-screening policy violator {according to her} ~ and no less invited as a VIP.
I can only say, jealousy spurred her wrath and her dislike of me. Jealousy, because first, I was seated in a reserved seat - she's not. I'm a blogger and yet on the VIP list - she's not. Evidently, the reason is crystal clear why she was not on the VIP list. And yes, I can only assume she is not too fond of bloggers either and whatever her problems with bloggers are, I say, remains her problem not mine.
But being bullied is not cool! Not cooler when you are bullied in front of your young child. Yet in retrospect, I guess it was a blessing in disguise somehow because it gave me the opportunity to teach my child a real life lesson that she can never learn inside a classroom and how to deal with it accordingly. A tragic way to learn it but it is what it is. We deal with it not run away from it. To stand firm and not cower.
Ironically, I used to think when I hear the word bully or bullying, or anything explicitly directed towards this ominous word, as a parent, I instinctively correlate it with school and young kids. And why not? It seem to be the common place where bullying occur. But after this incident, my entire perspective of bullies and bullying completely changed. And yes! the more I'm proud to be a blogger! 

If there's anything, I truly feel bad for, it's her husband. Just imagine what he has to put up with each day! How about you? Have you experienced being bullied before? What did you do about it?

1 comment:

  1. What a sour experience. I've been invited to one screening and fortunately it was the "no reserved seats" sort.

    I think "real" journalists may take issue with the fact that bloggers don't have to have their work critiqued and whittled away by editors. We write, we publish. That doesn't mean we're not professional - it just means we have to do even more work for people to understand we're credible.

    Sorry you had to go through with that with your daughter in tow.


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