If you follow me on Twitter, you may have recently clued in to the fact that I have what I have started calling a “maximum two year old.” You can interpret that however you want, I guess, because I haven’t found a way yet to go into detail in a way that won’t end with me being really irritated. She is a top end child. She is up there. My belief in my own absolute averageness is only strengthened by her existence, because it is top of the range people like Penelope, combined with bottom of the range other babies belonging to parents who should just go right to hell with their smug, unbruised faces, that combine to create the average, middle babies, that an average number of people are walking around with. My maximum two year old is what allows for your “kind of in there, somewhere” two year old to just be in there, somewhere.
I don’t even want to talk about it, because I know that someone had somehow had a worse kid even though I haven’t even detailed mine, or that I should JUST WAIT until she’s a teenager, because THAT’S a fine thing to say to someone trying to LAUNCH THEIR CHILD into a fan (I HAVE VAULTED CEILINGS), and I know everyone has a bunch of solutions, which leads to rounds upon rounds of “you can do it my way!,” leaving me as the huge, impossible asshole who isn’t even TRYING.
Look, I will tell you what happens, and I will use Swistle as an example, because she can’t stop me. Yesterday, she tweeted that she was looking for a watch with the following specific qualities: multiple alarms, not huge and terrible, not manly. So I looked for one, and I found a Casio watch that wasn’t very expensive, came in a couple blue colors, kept dual times, and was a noted ladies’ watch. I presented it to Swistle, TAA DAAA. I have solved your problem.
Except no! I hadn’t! Because the watch kept dual time, but didn’t actually have multiple alarms. I pointed that out to Swistle when she was lamenting the loss of a good huff, because I, too, enjoy a good huff and sulk. But! That’s not how it always goes. This is how it could have gone, where I am me, and Swistle is Swistle, except I’m being the type of person who makes things difficult sometimes, and Swistle is playing the me role, except it didn’t actually go this way, so I’m really playing both roles right now, and Swistle is just a placeholder, and you should understand that from this point on, none of this actually happened, so this is really a pretend Swistle, not at all actual Swistle.
Pretend Swistle: Oh, this only has one alarm, and I need three. Oh, well, thanks anyway!
Me, being the problem: Well, you can use the one alarm, then reset it, and then use it again, and then reset it!
Pretend Swistle: I guess I could, but that seems like a lot of trouble when I already have a current three alarm system. I can just keep looking for a multiple alarm watch. Thanks!
Me, being the problem: You could get this watch that I found for you, use the one alarm, and then use two of the current alarms that you are already using!
Pretend Swistle: Well, I’m really looking for a watch with multiple alarms, so that watch with one alarm really won’t work.
Me, being the problem: I JUST DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU WANT.
Pretend Swistle: … the end to your genetic line.
Look, I’m off track. Let me offer some advice. If your proposed solution to someone’s problem is not sticking, if the person is politely peeling it off each time you stick your tail onto their donkey butt, quit coming back around for a different angle at their rear, no matter how ample it seems and how your tail really seems to perfectly suit it. “Oh, what a lovely tail! I bet that would look really nice on some other donkey! Here, let me gently remove it from my butt and hand it back to you!” That’s a sign that you shouldn’t approach my ass again with the same tail.
Shit! Why does it always go like this? Look, Swistle isn’t a donkey. No one is a donkey. No one has an ass, ample or otherwise. Don’t approach. I mean, if you have the perfect tail, go ahead — NO. NO ONE NEEDS A TAIL. NO ONE NEEDS ASS DECORATION. That was a bad metaphor. You know what I meant. And anyway, of course it was specific people, none of whom are you.
This whole post is bad.
I have a maximum two year old, and I need you to stay away from my ass with anything you might want to pin on it for today. I may turn my ass toward you at another time. For now, I find myself saying, “well, that’s what you get” a lot. As one might expect. Oh, you fell off that teetering pile of foam play form thingers? Well, that’s what you get when you climb on top of a teetering pile of anything. You threw everything you were playing with over the gate and now you’re bewildered that you can’t have it back? Well, that’s what you get when you throw things, all the while bellowing the “NO THROWING!” house rule.
I’m saying, there are a lot of legitimate applications of the phrase, “Well, that’s what you get.” Penelope is probably my main and most valid application. And probably the most apt one for me, as well. “Oh, you had unprotected sex some years ago with the intent of getting pregnant and now you’re struggling with the resulting two year old? Well, that’s what you get.” We wouldn’t be friends anymore after you said such a thing, but it would be a fair, if dicknosey thing to say.
Other legitimate uses:
- Oh, you bought a Groupon for Lasik from a company no one has ever heard of and now you’re blind? Well, that’s kind of what you get.
- Oh, you texted your wedding guest to tell her what a shitty gift she gave you and you ended up being a viral news story? Well, that’s what you get.
- I don’t know, I didn’t think this through. That’s what I get.
But! There are two specific uses of “that’s what you get” that I think are unfair, annoying, and kind of smug and superior: the favor situation and the expectation of service situation.
In the favor situation, basically, you ask someone to do you a favor, and because it’s a favor, and you’re imposing, you basically have no real right to expect it to be done the way you’ve asked it to be done, or the way you need it to be done. If it comes out wrong, well, that’s what you get. You CAN’T expect something to be done right, because it’s a FAVOR. I think this is pretty well illustrated in the comments of one of my own settle this posts here. Since the person needing to be woken up has asked a favor of the other person, they basically HAVE to take what they get in terms of their request being followed to the letter. That’s the tone of many of the comments, anyway.
I don’t agree, though. I think an adult can ask another adult for a favor and have a reasonable expectation that their favor needs will be met, if the fav… ee… favee! agrees. Of course, there are exceptions. If you ask a chronically late person (don’t get me started) to take you to the airport and you miss your flight, well, that’s what you get. If you ask a terrible cook to make all the side dishes for Thanksgiving and everyone spends the next day rotating between the two toilets in the house, well, that’s what you get.
But if one reasonable favor asker asks a reasonable favee to perform a task, and the favee indicates that they can indeed perform said task in the way described and then does NOT perform it in the way described, I don’t think the asker is in ANY way deserving of a “well, that’s what you get.” Just because the favee decided to go all rogue and free form doesn’t mean it should be in any way expected just because it was a favor. In fact, as an adult, agreeing to be a favee does kind of obligate you to perform the task as agreed. Not just willy nilly it because, hey, it’s a favor. No big. I’m doing you a favor.
Of course, as the asker, you cut slack and don’t ask too much, and give thanks as appropriate and, you know, follow all the asker/favee rules of behavior. I’m just saying, the mere fact that something is a favor doesn’t mean that the asker has no right to expect it to be performed the way it was requested. In a favor/favee situation, the use of, “well, that’s what you get,” should not be automatic and is often a BUNSHOLE use of “well, that’s what you get.” Eh? Yes? No? Are you automatically obligated to accept whatever you get from a favee, even if you have taken the time to outline your needs and they were understood and accepted upon the time of asking for the favor? Is a “well, that’s what you get” deserved in ALL cases of favor/favee relations?
SECOND. Expectation of service. There are certain places that, because they have fallen out of public favor – well, they haven’t, not really, just certain segments of public and their favor – it is best just not to mention it if you don’t receive stellar service when you go there because, well, THAT’S WHAT YOU GET.
For the sake of this post, let’s use Wal-Mart and McDonald’s, because those are the two I’m specifically thinking of at the moment, but I’m sure you could add one or two more two the list. Setting aside all “how could you shop/eat there?” comments for whatever reasons people have for making them, I don’t know what any of those reasons have to do with the idea that someone should be expecting or even, judging by tone, expecting poor service if they choose to go to these places.
Because McDonald’s serves unhealthy food that some people don’t eat and could never possibly wrap their minds around why you would eat it, if you do choose to go there and get poor service in exchange for your money, well, that’s what you get. Because Wal-Mart employs business practices that some people don’t agree with, causing them to make the choice not to shop there, if you have a completely-unrelated-to-business-practices poor experience at Wal-Mart, well, that’s what you get.
I don’t know if this one is especially clear, but it was one that I always came across in the comments on The Consumerist, before it became a completely useless website without comments. An article would be posted about, say, Best Buy. A good article, highlighting some consumer-related issue of general interest to the readers of the website. And without fail, there would be some cocksock in the comments saying, “well, that’s what you get for shopping at Best Buy.” As if the simple act of entering a retail store that someone else doesn’t like and expecting goods and services in exchange for the money you earned makes you some kind of backwoods, dumbass, someone needs to hold your hand before you lose it up your own ass schmuck. No!
No, I refuse to accept that. I want to take my money into any place I want, and I don’t care if other people like the place or don’t like the place, I don’t believe it’s an exercise in predetermined insanity to expect it to just… go smoothly. For a place of BUSINESS to conduct their BUSINESS. It should be a SURPRISE when it doesn’t happen properly, not just… WHAT I GET. What I get, because other people don’t like the place because of some totally unrelated whatevers.
Of course there are exceptions, like the one Carl’s Jr. where all the soda from the fountain tastes like cleaner, or everyone has the one coffee place in their town that never gets it right and everyone KNOWS that, or whatever. But in general, you know, if I get on Twitter and I say, “Holy shit, I was checking out at Wal-Mart and the clerk picked up my box of cake mix and DUMPED IT INTO MY BRA,” and someone is like, “Well, you know. Wal-Mart. That’s what you get.” NO. BUNSHOLE. BUNS. HOLE.
YOU DON’T JUST GET CAKE IN THE PANTS!
I welcome your thoughts and opinions on other appropriate and/or bunshole uses of “well, that’s what you get,” even if they contradict my own, because I might contradict you back, and, well, that’s what you get.
So. Clearly I’ve been stewing on this for a while. Feels good, man. Feels good.
Tags: bunsholes, NO YOU GET IT, not you, outrage, people who are phoning it in, seriously not you, shopping, someone's going to take personal offense to this, take a juice break, terrible things that happen sometimes, that other guy, that's what you get, the Penny sensation sweeping the nation, times my genius wasn't appreciated, well that's what you get