Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Is being forward being friendly?

Being friendly is pretty much the one way you can survive when you’ve joined a new school. This is especially true when you’ve got a permanent bitchface like me, and you squint at people because you just can’t see their face (damn my bad eyesight.) My biggest issue is how friendly can you get? It’s always been a thing that I just can’t judge.

When I turn a corner in a corridor I can’t judge whether to smile or say hello to the person I met the day before, so I pretty much always go with the smile. Yet, when someone actively says ‘hello’ or perhaps goes bit crazy and actually hugs me I feel really happy, like they actually bothered to make an effort to acknowledge me. I mean, anyone can smile, right?

My best example of this is of something that happened to me a day before I started sixth form. When I went to go and collect my uniform I was standing in the queue talking to my friend who was complaining about her whale of a new blazer. Another girl who I knew then joined the queue. Exchanging normal and expected social conventions, she went on to introduce the guy who was with her. Two days later, when I was coming back from a friend’s house he saw me in the street said ‘hello’ and gave me a hug. In the midst of this I said out loud ‘I don’t even know you’, and he went on to say ‘see you tomorrow’. And, well, it sorta’ put me in a really good mood. I mean, this guy is totally in my good books. He could ask me to polish his shoes for him and I’d probably do it.

The thing is, I’d consider myself to be a fairly friendly person, I like to talk to new people, or maybe talk at new people. So, what do I call this action? It’s something aside from friendliness; it’s forwardness in my mind. Forward is something I just can’t do. The thing is though, I don’t quite know where the line stops with forwardness. I can barely pull up the courage to start conversations with next to absolute strangers in my school, especially when there are some people who look like you’re using up their oxygen by talking to them.

But I wouldn’t say that you should just take a shot in the dark and be forward with someone, because whilst the forwardness I’ve experienced at my school have been acts of friendliness there are occasions when you should really just keep shtum.

There’s forward in the hope of becoming someone’s friend, but sometimes you can just be way too friendly. Par exemple, there are girls who are extremely coquettish and almost touchy with guys they have just met, and whilst I know some guys who love girls like this others find them extremely uncomfortable. I call this forward, not friendly (I mean, if anything it’s just plain flirting.) Also, when you’re a little forward, it comes off as being intrusive rather than friendly. Like you just want to know everything about them right now. We’ve only just met, I didn’t know you were writing my biography.

So, from what I’ve learnt it seems that forwardness and friendliness are two different attributes, but there is room for overlap, as long as the right intention is there. Funny this is, I’ve also noticed that the more popular and good looking someone is, the more likely they are to get away with being forward. Then again, that’s not forwardness, that’s just putting false hope into girls that you like them- for the more presumptuous of you that is. Generally though, forward and friendly tend to have different motives. That isn’t to say that I wouldn’t half mind that hot guy in the year above randomly saying hello to me. Yeah, I’d probably appreciate that- a lot. 

Written by Belle


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