The Camp Vamp: Katrina Fox

Commentary on GLBTIQ issues, social justice and some of life's quirks.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Polite conversation is so last-century

After trying to resist the lure of social networking sites such as Myspace and Facebook, I've caved in and acquired several 'friends' on both, but quite what we're supposed to do now, I don't know. I've never liked that initial polite conversation stuff you have to do with new people: 'Nice weather, isnt' it?', 'So, what do you do?'

That one always bugs me - what do I do when and which piece of information is more interesting to you? That I sub-edit and proof pages for various magazines, or spend at least an hour most Sunday mornings imagining slightly kinky fantasies set in downtown New York involving women wearing glitter eyeshadow? I also speak in a strange tongue when addressing my cat, with made-up words of affection such as 'choochy woochy ooboobooboochickitapussicatus'; shuffle my feet from side to side while singing the lyrics to Dr Hook's 'Who the Fuck is Alice?' to myself while waiting at traffic lights; and create my own social message T-shirts proclaiming such things as 'lesbian vegans will save the world' using an inkjet printer, special paper and an iron.

Being defined by your job gives an extremely limited picture of a person. The only time I've been truly interested in or impressed by someone's job and keen to know more is when I met a female Israeli fighter pilot a few years ago at a party in London hosted by a gorgeous old dominatrix called Kate who, at only four-feet five inches in height, somehow got away with manoeuvring a large four-wheel-drive jeep through the city for 30 years while completely shitfaced on marijuana and not crash, even once.

Then there's the whole 'Where are you from?' I know it's customary to reply with your city or country of birth, but aren't you so tempted to come back with 'My mother's vagina' every now and then, just to mix it up a bit and make the conversation less predictable? 'How are you?' has to be the most bland, not to mention dishonest, polite conversation opener since it's guaranteed to elicit a lie. We're like robots programmed with a small selection of acceptable standard answers, namely 'good', 'very well', 'great' or 'fine'. At least the last one as an acronym is more likely to offer some vestige of truth: F**ked-up Insecure Neurotic Emotional. I propose replacing the preposition now and then, again just to mix it up a bit - for example, 'Why are you?' should be enough to induce psychological meltdown in your acquaintance and provide you with a few moments of amusement while they struggle with philosophical paradigms to try and come up with an answer.

I suppose I'd better get the ball rolling with my new Myspace and Facebook 'friends'. You never know, one of them might also enjoy imagining slightly kinky fantasies set in downtown New York involving women wearing glitter eyeshadow, and we can bond.

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