I've been talking to a customer of ours at work for nearly a year. We speak twice a week and after 11 months of listening to his gruff, Hull accent telling me what for on the phone and knowing how frustratingly bad he is at sending emails, I had the perfect picture in my head. A 68 year old, rotund Father Christmas look-a-like with a pot belly and greying stubble. Your standard white, middle aged Yorkshire man, who's never really been out of the Hull, let alone the country.
The door buzzes at work last Monday, and my back goes up. He's here and I know we are in for a 4 hour appointment of whining, moaning and finger pointing about all that's gone wrong, as this old grandad munches his way through our biscuit supply whilst wiping his lunch down his cords.
'You must be Jo' says the familiar voice. Around I turn to be met by a 6 foot 4, 45 year old, Armani wearing, stunning bald black guy who's just got off the plane from Ibiza. I'm literally knocked off the spot, and also fancy him quite a bit. I was dumb struck for at least half an hour, and couldn't believe I'd got my assumption so wrong. My old boss used to live by the motto of 'Never Assume' and at times like this I know why. He was a delight in the showroom, and I left for the day with a new mate and a new older man crush. Who'd have thought!
It also got me thinking how many wrong assumptions we all make on a daily basis, and how quick we are to make them.
Assumptions such as;
- A guy who wears Converse or Vans with a suit must work in 'media, darling'. And probably lives in a house share with artisans. No doubt in East London. No thought is ever given to his general comfort.
- The guy that brings a McDonalds into work must be hanging. Not just hungry. Or fancying a treat. But automatically a pisshead. In everyone's eyes.
- All builders are straight. All dancers are not. All people that work in museums never get laid because they smell like old books.
- The really leggy blonde, with lovely eyes and a killer smile at the bar, is obviously waiting for her 7ft 9 rugby playing boyfriend with two dicks. There is absolutely no point in approaching her.
- That everyone is happier and richer than you. Truth be known, everyone else in your carriage is also working out how much money a day they have to live off between now and payday on their iPhone calculator.
- That when people swear at their computer screen, they are the most stressed and overworked people in your office. In actual fact, 9 times out of 10, they've just forgotten their Amazon password.
- That everyone on the 23.53 from Victoria is as pissed as you on a Thursday night. Blind eye cast on all shift workers.
- People that are glued to their Blackberry on public transport are very executive, extremely important and very rich. High chances are they are just having a BBM row with their Mrs.
- People that studied Art History at University must have a serious pot habit. People that studied Physics probably only got around to having sex at the age of 27. People that studied Beauty Therapy didn't go to school.
-People that go to festivals love getting off their titty kakkas on illegal highs. And that's the only reason they go. Nothing to do with the music. Or the atmosphere. Nothing at all.
- A guy holding a bunch of flowers is obviously groveling. And has acted like an utter dickhead. He isn't just being Mr Nice.
- Skinny girls don't get a sweaty bum or cleavage in the gym. Or feel like they are going to cough up their lung when they run. Also, the skinniness is completely effortless. Nothing to do with the fact they stopped doing anything fun at the age of 19.
- A man wearing a short sleeved shirt and tie combo must work in Accounts. Or IT. Obviously.
- People with double barreled surnames must be the offspring of middle class hippies. Or aristocrats. Not just normal people from Balham that couldn't make a decision.
Oh and of course...
- Your nether regions are the only ones your doctor has ever seen, and you must therefore have a near heart attack every time they need to look down there. Truth being, cupping your balls is pretty much like signing off an invoice to them. No dramas.
& then there's of course the assumptions that are always correct, and are the reason that we do assume.
It's fair to assume that a cup of tea will no doubt make you feel better no matter the situation, Polish people really do love drinking vodka. And yes, traffic wardens really are all arseholes.