On being negative

I love to bitch.

Having a low tolerance for stupidity, I love calling out the idiots of the world, whether it’s the person standing at the top (or bottom) of the subway stairs, reading her Blackberry, blocking the rush hour crowd; the tourists who feel they must walk five across the sidewalk; or the taxi driver who thinks I give a crap about his theories of when he has better business.

But does this negativity eat away at me?

Overall I think I’m a positive person. I don’t think bad things happen to me despite everything that’s happened. I’m quite lucky because of lessons learned. I’m healthy (knock wood), financially comfortable, I know what I love to do, I have friends and family who care about me, and I’m pretty.

Haha, just kidding.

What gall would I have to have to complain about my life? I’m not a child prostitute in Bangkok, nor a war widow in Iraq. I’m not an oppressed woman living in mainland China or Japan. I have all my limbs.

In high school I developed this persona as an angry girl. I was angry, especially when people were jerks to me for no reason, but it was a defense mechanism as well. I was so shy, I could barely talk to people. But I didn’t like coming off as shy so I decided to come off as angry instead.

As I got older, I honed this anger into a pseudo-toughness that only in a blue moon transformed into real courage. I loved cursing in front of people who found it shocking, telling off assholes who said rude things to me on the street, not caring what people thought.

I’m a petite woman who looks younger than she is. As kids my brother and I were called chink and chingchong every day. My mother bosses me around. And so how do I make up for all these things? I’m tough with the idiot strangers on the street. I don’t hide my disdain for their inane cell phone conversations, roll my eyes when they bump into me, sigh audibly when they take forever at the subway turnstile.

Also, hey, it’s New York.

But maybe it’s not necessary for me to be so impatient, so negative about these little things. My reactions don’t make the situations any better. I don’t get worked up over the super crowded subway anymore. I’ve accepted it and push right into the middle of train. True, I totally bump into people – it’s the Chinese in me – but I do say sorry in a sincere way.

I was talking to YP about this, and after we agreed it’s probably better not to be quite so negative, I bitched about this group on Flickr called Happy Couples.

I mean, c’mon! Blech.


  1. I would bitch about a group called “Happy couples” as well. And then post shots of things like tequila and limes, and cigarettes and scotch.

  2. There’s a Flickr group called “Happy Couples”?! I could barf until zerodoll’s suggested other happy couples. =P
    I can understand your feeling that you’re an angry girl and you’ve probably learned that being truly negative inside is unproductive and bad for your health. I was angry and snobby because it made me feel as if I was selective, couldn’t deign to be similar to the masses.
    As for pushing your way around NYC, I say continue it when it’s merited. It’s *The Big City* and people gotta learn that and multitask better with their cell phones. If you’ve got go-go-go in your blood, assert it! I do, no matter what slow-poke place I end up in. =D

  3. Wow. I gotta check out that Flickr group. Sounds like my cup of tea! ;)

    Me? I like to bitch about drivers. I get all pissed off, and it bothers J, but once I’m done bitching… I’m done. It’s gone…

    I heard that complaining about others is an attempt to make one feel better about themself… superior. Hmmm, perhaps. I still enjoy it though.