The Gaz Rule of Groups

Nicktor came round last night (this explains why I missed an entry) and we watched Kill Bill parts one & two. We thoroughly enjoyed both movies. It was a bit of a long haul but well worth it. However, I should warn anyone reading that they are both VERY violent and full of foul language. Though not quite as good as Pulp Fiction they still show Tarantino at his best.

Of course a lot of beer, whisky and Gazerrole were consumed and it was the usual very late night. This is what I’m blaming for tonight’s post being a bit grouchy.

I have a theory. It’s a thoroughly researched theory; one I’ve been working on all my life. Mirinda isn’t 100% sure but, I think, deep down inside, she knows I’m right. As the post heading says, it’s my Rule of Groups. The Rule goes something like this:

In any group of five or more people, there will always be someone who is disliked for some reason or other. It can be a mild irritating dislike or a full blown dislike but there has to be one for the group as a whole to work effectively. If this person leaves the group or improves behaviour then someone else will take over as the disliked member. The reason is so that the group can remain cohesive as a whole by targeting one member for shared dislike. Generally the disliked person doesn’t know they are and this is very good for group cohesion.

At uni, in my Wednesday group, there is a clear favourite for this position. He has to be the most irritating person I know at the moment. I’m sure it’s not just me. To start off with, he tucks his t-shirt into his trousers (note, not jeans but trousers). I can (sort of) forgive this in men of advancing years who may fear a chill on the kidneys but this guy is about 28 and it just looks like he doesn’t care how stupid he looks. Ok, I know I’m pretty insular when it comes to looking right but still…I hate the tuck! This is not the only reason, though, in some instances, say a really cool group of people, it would be enough.

The most annoying thing he does is correct people. In class we have to give presentations. We are in groups of eight and each week one member of each group must present. It’s important to remember that these people are students and not necessarily confident public speakers. In fact, the actual presentation is only a small fraction of the final mark we receive for the module because they don’t expect everyone to be able to stand up and talk without some nerves.

When people are nervous and they have to get up and speak in front of the class, they sometimes say the wrong thing. Just small errors which the class will forgive because they understand what the presenter is going through. For instance, they might be talking about something with the acronym GHP and they accidentally say HGP. Lecturers even do this sometimes. It’s nothing important and, being humans, we can work out what they mean and spend very little time processing the information.

Mr Tuck-Shirt, however, feels it important to point out each time a presenter does this, by repeating the mistake correctly. He says this out loud but not quite loud enough for the presenter to hear and just loud enough for everyone else. Today he did it quite a few times and I was on the verge of telling him to shut up. Of course, I didn’t. I just seethed quietly and listened attentively, hoping some of my confidence would flow out to the front.

He then had a ridiculous, time wasting conversation with the lecturer about a pointless point to do with his presentation next week. Firstly the lecturer had no idea what he was talking about but when he did he tried to tell him it wasn’t important and he just needed to follow the instructions. This wasn’t enough for old Tuck-Shirt. The conversation lasted much longer than it needed to.

I was about ready to start bashing my head on the desk in frustration and then I remembered my Rule of Groups and I instantly felt better. Of course, Mr Tuck-Shirt was just playing his part in our class group. The fact that he was probably promoted into a higher position in his childhood house by a molly coddling mother, was all grist to his mill. The fact that he was probably picked on at school for being a nerd and a dork also helped. None of it mattered because it merely brings harmony to any groups he happens to find himself a part of. I bet he has no close friends.

Anyway, rant over. I feel much better now.

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