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Creepy People Watching – Episode 1

From karaoke night, before my friends ditched out.

From karaoke night, before my friends ditched out.

Not all people watching is epic. Sometimes it’s just creepy.

Have I ever told you all what a lightweight I am when it comes to alcohol? I’m a cheaper date than a four foot nothin’ girl who’s never had a drink in her life. Seriously. Sometimes all it takes is a couple beers, or a glass or two of wine, or a single shot of the harder stuff and I’m drunk as a skunk getting punked.

Anyway, I was at karaoke last Thursday with a big group of friends. One by one they all called it quits and wandered off to their beds somewhere far away from the bar we were having so much fun in. Eventually, all that was left was a few of the regulars and me as I pounded water and sang a couple more on my own. I was a little tipsy, but not too bad.

When my last friends took off around 1 am, almost immediately this creepy looking, fully-mustached, short little chubby drunk Latino came from behind and clutched me softly by the shoulders.

Expecting it to be one of my friends based solely on the friendliness and gentleness of it, I swung around with a smile on my face. Maybe I hadn’t been ditched after all.

Instead I came face to face with this unnerving guy who had just as big a smile on his own face. My own beaming countenance disappeared as I realized I was about to be propositioned. Or murdered. Or worse.

“You want that we do something?” he said. I hadn’t even seen him throughout the night. And I had no idea what he meant by “do something.” He certainly hadn’t been singing any numbers.

“No, I really don’t want to do something.” I attempted to turn back around but he grabbed my shoulder and stopped me.

“I know you,” he said as he did.

Don’t ever grab my shoulder and try and force me to stay and talk to you. I don’t care who you are. Nothing will tick me off quicker. I pushed his hand off rudely. “No, you don’t,” I informed him.

“I seen you and I been watching you.”

I closed my eyes and attempted to gauge my sobriety. I still wasn’t quite there. I could just sit the rest of it out in my car. “You’ve been watching me, huh? Where?” I stood up.

“I seen you and I been watching you.”

I was done. This dude was weirding me out. Big time. I pulled out my wallet to leave the waitress a tip so that I could take off. “Oh no, man, I don’t want your money,” he suddenly said panicked.

“Don’t worry. It’s not for you,” I told him as I laid a crisp fiver on the table. “Take it easy.” I started heading for the door.

“Wait! I know you! You want that I come with you?” he yelled after me and started following me.

I tensed up and slowed. I knew that to keep going would lead to a very unfriendly altercation in the parking lot as I tried to shake this guy.

Then an angel appeared.

My waitress must have noticed what was going on because she got between us and started coaxing this guy to his barstool again. She gave me a nod, I returned it, and was on my way.

As I headed through the door, the last words I heard from this guy were to the waitress. “But I know him,” he said.

Yeah, it was creepy.

Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing

PS. This blog post has also been recorded as a podcast. You know, if you’re into that kind of thing.

93 comments
TwelveOf13
TwelveOf13

clearly you've never met my 4foot nothing sister in law!


mindlelindle
mindlelindle

It was creepy, but have you considered that this man follows your blog and English is not his first language so there was a communication error?

Sorry you were creeped out, but there are a hundred reasons for him to have behaved that way.

A couple of years ago I was leaving a bar on New Years Eve with some friends when an obviously inebriated woman came up to me. She told me how beautiful I was, gave me a hug, and then tried to pull my shirt down so she could see my boobs. In public.

Her more sober friend was effusive in her gratitude to me for being kind to the very drunk girl, which caused me to wonder how many people would have reacted in a very negative way to the situation.

Granted my reaction would have been much different had she actually exposed my breasts in public, but... yeah.

Woobie21
Woobie21

Glad to know you're safe, Dan.  That was definitely creepy.  As others have said, though, he may well feel that he knows you from your blog... but his comments just made him out to be REALLY creepy.

Sarah
Sarah

This is pretty creepy, but it sure made for a good story. In high school, some friends and I were filming a music video by a motel in our town. This creepy trucker guy came over to us from across the parking lot and said, "You want come back to my truck to take picture?" At that, we all started screaming and ran away back to our car. 

LadyMadonna
LadyMadonna

Did you actually drink and sing all night and then your tab was $5!  I'm moving !   (sorry about The Touchy Creepster Guy.  Eww!)

Sarah Mindlin
Sarah Mindlin

Well you ARE a somewhat famous blogger! Maybe he reads your blog and in his intoxicated state forgot that he doesn't actually KNOW you. I remember reading in a recent blog post that you were hoping somebody someday would recognize you as the Single Dad Laughing author… well here ya go!

Sarah Mindlin
Sarah Mindlin

Well you ARE a somewhat famous blogger! Maybe he reads your blog and in his intoxicated state forgot that he doesn't actually KNOW you. I remember reading in a recent blog post that you were hoping somebody someday would recognize you as the Single Dad Laughing author… well here ya go!

Arynn
Arynn

Wow, that is super creepy indeed.  Thank goodness for the waitress, next time you are there she should get an extra tip :)  Or a good word to the manager about how helpful she is.

Laura Fama
Laura Fama

All I can picture is that creepy guy in Bad Santa that attacked Santa in the parking lot... lol.."Ass Clown!!"

Susan Dowman-Nevling
Susan Dowman-Nevling

Always a scary thing for anyone. Kudos to you for being firm and kudos to the bartender for helping out.

hgubisch
hgubisch

Totally creepy! But now I want to know more about Sir Creeps-A-Lot! Is he a regular at the bar? Was he trying to get with you? Did he think he really knew you and that you were his ride? I need more info! LOL

momof2plus
momof2plus

I think you should have pursued the money thing... that could have been interesting! 


Holly Overmyer
Holly Overmyer

I've been privileged to meet a couple of bloggers I've followed for years. The proper protocol is to say "Are you by chance Dan, of SDL? I'm a big fan of yours! I'm Holly, and it's so nice to meet you!' etc etc. No walk up, grab someone and just keep saying "I know you" without saying how or where.

The Real Dave
The Real Dave

Um...ick.  Major boundary violation.  Like you, if it were one of my friends I would've taken it as a friendly gesture, but unless I'm getting a professional massage that I paid for I don't like being touched like that by strangers, male OR female.  At best, this guy doesn't handle his drinks very well and loses all sense of personal boundaries.  At worst, this guy's a certifiable creep that you need to keep your distance from and vice versa.  Personal safety applies to both men and women who may be out alone, because guys can end up in deep trouble too.  Even if you were physically more than a match for the guy, you don't know if he may be carrying a knife or gun on him or in his car, and a fistfight could leave you open to serious injury and possibly jail time for assault and battery.  Party only in the company of trusted friends, and stay safe. 

Abby Cox
Abby Cox

Weirdo! You should carry mace Dan!

Abby Cox
Abby Cox

Weirdo! You should carry mace Dan!

lillulu84
lillulu84

I don't know what it was, but yesterday I was getting all kinds of attention from men! First, I was in JCPenney buying some men's shirts for work (can't find an oxford for a woman anywhere!) and had NO CLUE what the numbers meant, so I asked this older gentleman for some help. First, he seemed nice enough, then he made a comment like "Well, I have to fit them for my big belly but have a different problem. You've got those big boobs." Umm...thank you? Then, I was going through the drive-thru and the kid was VERY friendly, and then as he handed me my drink, he said, "I hope your day is as good as you look." That was more funny than creepy..but yeah. Later in the day, I was grocery shopping and these creepy men kept staring at me...mostly at my chest...and just making me feel like...eww. I think I'm never wearing that shirt ever again. lol

Sam D Maloney
Sam D Maloney

Interesting on so many levels! Something about you pinged his gaydar: that's not a bad thing at all! It means you are consciously or subconsciously expressing the truth of who you are.

He was drunk, horny, pushy and probably deeply, deeply closeted. Getting up the nerve to approach you a hot Caucasian guy in a public place and actually put his hands on you may have been a major step forward in coming to terms with his own sexuality. He clearly needs to learn some boundaries and work on his social skills, but I see a certain pathos in his side of this story... waiting for the cute guys friends to leave, pounding the liquid courage, hoping that tonight he won't be leaving the bar alone.

He was a jerk, though, and I'm sorry he made you uncomfortable. I think you handled the situation well: when faced with unwanted attraction, BE FIRM. For him to touch you without permission was a warning signal that this guy doesn't get the polite and friendly brush off, he isn't capable of decoding any signal more subtle than a sledgehammer. "I'm not interested in talking to  you, please leave me alone!" is a useful phrase, repeated as necessary, a little louder each time. A good bartender will immediately intervene when he hears those magic words. 

And yes, ladies, we get it: you are subject to that sort of attention all the time. You have my genuine condolences, but please try not to take too much pleasure in seeing a man subjected to the same sort of bad behavior.  I've completely lost track of the number of times I've intervened on behalf of a damsel in distress. But onlookers are far less likely to step in when the people involved in such an altercation are both men.

Krista Snyder
Krista Snyder

LOL, this made my day. Some creepy old dude said some really inappropriately sexual comments to me as I was coming out of a public restroom last week. There was nobody else around, but I was ready to drop kick him in the face if he came any closer.

SerenityLeith
SerenityLeith

I don't think that sounded friendly at all, yo. That was just straight up creepy. If he was really a fan of your blog or something, he would say something off the bat, not just keep saying, "I know you, I been watching you." Glad to hear you're safe, Dan! Stay safe!

Daniel
Daniel

Maybe he did know you, from your blog.  What you have to remember is that you post alot about your life on here.  Many of us come to feel like we know you, while you have no idea who we are.  That paired with alcohol, which lowers inhibitions and maybe this guy who was just trying to be friendly, crossed the line and came off as creepy.  Then again, maybe I am giving him too much credit.  Either way, you have to be careful out there.  Lotta weirdos roaming the streets and you never know what one might be up to.  It only took me being in one such situation to convince me to never leave the house without being armed.  I will never again be caught in a situation where I am unable to defend myself.

MOConnor21
MOConnor21

I'm so glad we aren't reading about you in the news! Yay for angels!!

creativemomma
creativemomma

I got recognized on the bus from my Yelp reviews/profile and took my pics off immediately after that. The guy was normal, but who knows what weirdos have been looking at my profile. For you, it's not so easy because you're a blog celeb with your pics all over your blog. Be careful!!! You may need an entourage to protect you from now on like a ROCK STAR ;)

Rae Gerold-Smith
Rae Gerold-Smith

Reading your blog doesn't give anyone the right to act like that. A reproachful fan would send you a drink via the waitress and request an introduction. Grabbing you like that is technically assault. Glad you got away safely. Yay for your savvy server.

modernmom23
modernmom23

Seriously creepy.  I worked at a truck stop as a waitress and some of the guys that came through there were just awful.  Hence the reason I only worked there a few weeks.  FYI:  Unwanted advances towards your waitress / server WILL result in spit or snot in your food.  Consider yourselves warned.

Karlee Stone
Karlee Stone

if he's reading this, good. He should know how creeped out and annoyed you were about it. Be careful! yikes....

dmsj75
dmsj75

Being as you are a fairly well-known blogger, he may very well have known you.  And read this post.  

Please be careful, Dan.  There are a lot of scaries out there.

KrisMacFeat
KrisMacFeat

I used to work 3rd shift at a gas station/convenience store.  Way creepy dudes there. I had one guy follow me into the back room when I went to get his cigarettes. Another grabbed my hand when I gave him change, pulled me acrossed the counter and kissed me.  There was a regular that was always putting his hands on me and the store finally took out a restraining order on him.  Then came the night that a guy came in with a gun. Luckily all he wanted was the money in the register and safe, but that was my last night there.


Misty Anderson Canada
Misty Anderson Canada

I thought the same thing as Shannan. Blog fan. Or facebook, which means he is now insulted.

Corrine A
Corrine A

Well now you know how most females have felt on many an occassion when out on the town, especially in a bar. Glad everything turned out ok.

zjsmom
zjsmom

In one you your last blogs, you DID plead for someone to recognize you!  LOL

somegirl
somegirl

@LadyMadonna I suspect that was just his tip, after having paid his bill prior, and after having had 2 alcoholic drinks or so and a lot of water.  That's just how I took the story.

Monikajk
Monikajk

@Sam D Maloney 

We're not happy that a guy went through what we face all the time, but we are happy when guys understand. ;)  No one should be subjected to such treatment.  Ignoring this when it's two men is sad.  While guys don't have the same worry about a physical strength imbalance, and are less likely to be stalked or rage murdered for rejecting advances, no one wants an awkward altercation in a parking lot.  That waitress who helped SDL did the right thing.

SerenityLeith
SerenityLeith

@modernmom23 I too worked in food service, at a casino. There were so many college guys or older men who were just terrible, commenting on my breasts or trying to grab my butt. I was grateful for security at those times, esp considering one was my brother! Still, despite their actions (who knows what they do when they're SOBER), I never did anything to their food. I wouldn't want someone to blow some snot in my food, even if it was meant for someone else.


Amber C
Amber C

@dmsj75 I was going to suggest the same thing! We all tend to get comfortable on the internet on the other end of our computer but in reality we aren't as safe as we think!  Be careful Dan!