I’ve mentioned in previous posts about my old tendency to try and avoid conflict and my desire to please others. I often failed to speak my mind or insist on doing what I need to for myself when I feel it might conflict with someone else’s desires. I’ve been doing rather well with this. An example I talked about before was when I was able to reject someone who wanted to use my guitar for a photograph without giving him any explanation.
Well, today I screwed up. A friend hasn’t been visiting from another city. We met last night and it was fun enough. Then today he invited me to come to his friends “Italian Restaurant”. I guess I was expecting real Italian food, and I figured that I won’t be seeing him for a while and so I went to meet him.
The food was awful. Ok, not big deal. The owner was so nice, he offered us free everything. I couldn’t bring myself to tell him how bad the food was, I figure someone who can't much on their own, probably won’t know what to do with any advice I gave him. Ok, no problem.
The problem came when he said “I’ll treat you guys to dinner in about two hours, It’ll be great.” I should have said I can’t. Even lying and saying I had plans would have been better than what I did. I stuck around for dinner. Why did I do it?
I thought about how my friend was getting on a train once 3 hours and it’d be the last chance to see him. I thought about how the owner said his wife’s is learning guitar and how I wanted to meet her. I thought about how he had a wii and how I haven’t had chance to play most games on Wii. I thought about eating for free when I don’t have any substantial income other than steemit. I thought about how damn nice the guy is. And so I said “ok”.
It wasn’t just that the food was and conversation wasn’t low quality. The guy was so polite and generous that he made me uncomfortable. It didn’t seem entirely ingeniune but he felt desperate. He even said he had no friends in the city and 0 customers came in during our 4 hours sitting there. I just felt bad for the guy, and feeling sorry for someone is no reason to spend time with them.
If I had taken a moment to think about what I wanted, I really wanted to get out of there. I should have. If I can deal with such an awful lunch, my friend should be able to deal with me taking off early. The owner should be able to deal with me ducking out. Instead, I made this nice owner who I had little to talk about with think of me as a friend I will probably end up avoiding in the future, and I drained myself pretending to want to be there. The culture here doesn’t really have a good way to reject people halfway either. When you say “I’m full” they still bring you more food. And so I ended up feeling pretty passive agressive all day, and lost a lot of energy.
It’s ok. It’s all a learning experience. But AAAHHHH I’m drained! I will try not to put myself in any situations like this in the future. Afterwards I stopped by to visit some other friends on the way home and curled up on their couch for a while and recharged with some good music and easy going people.