Culturally cursed

Dear Alex,

I remember when I was learning to drive I was afraid to go above 50mph, it felt like I was flying – why go any faster? Now if I’m stuck behind someone going 50mph in a 60mph I wonder why they are deliberately trying to slow down my day.

So I saw someone famous today – this is still somewhat of a novelty to me – despite it seemingly being a common occurrence in London.

I never understand people who go up and say something to celebrities. I always wonder whether it is someone who in fact just looks like someone famous. It never occurs to me that it could actually be them. Today I knew it was Jim Broadbent (a colleague had already confirmed it) but instead of being like “Hi Jim – loved you in Bridget Jones”, I just pretended like I was very busy and didn’t even notice his presence.

I would count myself as a friendly person, but I am also definitely very British. By this I mean, I don’t make eye contact with anyone on the tube, I don’t speak to people I don’t know unless they speak to me first and I say ‘sorry’ at every opportunity. Obviously these kinds of traits were not uncommon in our house – in fact I think this shared realisation is how we became friends in the first place (although the last one is most definitely a characteristic unique to me).

I genuinely believe this is a cultural oddity though. One of the girls at work is French and she does not have this issue. Every day for lunch we go to the canteen and she gets her food and waits for me to get mine. In that time she makes about 5 friends. I always find her chatting away to someone she has never met before like they have been besties for years.

When I brought it up she said she thought it would be weird if she didn’t make conversation with someone who was stood near her. I don’t think it would be weird at all. But I wish I did.

Am I normal? Please say it’s a cultural curse and not just me.

Love T xxx

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