Morning Coffee | Security Risk
It’s been a strange kind of a week.
On Sunday, Terry and decided to head to Glasgow Fort – which is not, unfortunately, an actual fort, but an outdoor shopping mall, just outside Glasgow. We go there fairly often, mostly because there’s a pretty good Zara, which I like to visit, and, well, because we’re pretty much addicted to TFI Friday’s nachos, basically, so we like to pop in there, too.
On this particular occasion, we got to the Fort just as the sun came out after a full week of non-stop rain. There just so happens to be a pretty cool wall right next to Zara, and as we walked towards it, it occurred to me that hey, I could maybe just grab a quick photo of my outfit here, seeing as I haven’t been able to get any photos this week!
Terry had just started snapping away (When you’re a blogger, you carry a camera everywhere. Well, you never know when a decent wall is going to present itself, do you?) when a security guard approached us. At first, I thought it was going to be OK: we do get approached every so often when we’re out taking photos, and with the exception of that one time when someone called the police and reported Terry for “stalking” me, most of the time, people are just curious, and the interaction is a friendly one.
This was not to be one of those times.
I wouldn’t say this security guard’s manner was aggressive, exactly, but … well, he was NOT friendly, let’s put it that way – and he became even LESS friendly when I revealed that the photos Terry had been taking of me were destined for my fashion blog. “No they’re not,” the guard said, immediately: “That’s not allowed. It’s a security risk.”
Now, I’ll just say here that Terry and I had absolutely no intention of breaking any “rules” (If we’d known Glasgow Fort didn’t allow photography, we wouldn’t even have considered taking a quick photo against that damn wall…), and we have no problem whatsoever with someone politely pointing out to us that we’re unwittingly doing something wrong. The problem here, though, was that this security guard was NOT polite… and, well, we couldn’t really understand what it was that made a photo of me standing against a wall (Which, by the way, had absolutely nothing about it that would indicate its location: it was literally just a blank wall, and I was standing with my back to it, so there were no people or other buildings in the photo…) such a risk to the security of the mall. So we asked him.
“Don’t be cheeky,” was the answer.
The guard went on to tell us that if I’d been taking “family photos” to post on Facebook, THAT would be OK – even if I’d been right out in the open, surrounded by shops and people. A photo of me on my own, however, to go on my blog? HELL TO THE NO. SOUND THE DEFCON WARNING.
There was obviously no point in arguing with the guy (and, I mean, it wasn’t like we’d turned up with a photo crew, prepared to do a shoot for Vogue or anything: a quick outfit photo against a wall really wasn’t worth the hassle we were getting for it…), so we went on our way, and tried to enjoy the rest of the day. I have to admit, though, I was more upset by all of this than I probably should have been (I’m the kind of person who hates confrontation of any kind, and this guy had treated us like we were criminals preparing to rob the place or something. I felt a bit like a little kid being told off by the headmaster, and that’s the kind of thing that will generally make me burst into tears…), so I posted a quick tweet about it, and whadya know, The Fort’s PR person replied, and told me that actually, there was no rule about photography, and they had no problem whatsoever with me posting a photo on my blog. Which… was good to know, but now we just felt like we’d been harassed for NO reason, you know?
We did end up speaking with the head of security that day, who apologised, confirmed that we hadn’t done anything wrong, and generally made us feel a whole lot better about things. Let this be a warning to you all, though, people: DO NOT just assume it’s OK to take photos in a public place like a mall – or anywhere else that’s patrolled by security, basically. Obviously in this case it turned out that it WAS OK, and the security guard was just being a little over-zealous, but the whole episode has really made me re-think my habit of just pulling out a camera wherever I go, and snapping away with it. I think in these days of social media, when everyone has camera phones, and is busy Snapchatting, and Instagramming, or whatever, it can be really hard to know where to draw the line, or what’s OK to capture, and it’s not pleasant when someone decides to challenge you on it: trust me on this.
Oh, and the real kicker? I absolutely HATED those photos anyway: which is why I’m not posting them, even although I’ve been assured that national security will in no way be compromised by my doing so. GAH.
(I did get a new pair of jeans in Zara, though, so at least the day wasn’t a complete bust.)
Later in the week, this happened:
So, yeah, someone keyed our car. (It also needs a wash, but that’s neither here nor there…) Again, this kind of thing upsets me more than it probably should. I mean, I know someone’s probably going to pop up and tell me about all of the children dying of cancer, or whatever (And guess what? I’m upset about that too, because it turns out you can care about sick children and STILL be annoyed when someone keys your car! It’s not an either/or kind of situation!), but I honestly wanted to cry when I saw it. This is exactly the kind of thing I was talking about in this post, and obviously it’s a kind of behaviour that’s not just confined to the internet. We can get the car fixed (Our insurance excess is much more than it’ll cost to just repair it, unfortunately, but either way, we’d be out of pocket, just because some idiot decided to mindlessly vandalise our property…), but I just can’t fathom the kind of mindset that makes someone think, “Oh, hey, there’s someone’s car: I think I’ll vandalise it!” I mean, seriously: WHY?! What’s WRONG with people?
Of course, there’s absolutely nothing we can do it about it now other than cough up the cash to get it fixed. It’s particularly annoying, because we’ve just had a ton of work done to the car this year, and spent a lot of money in the process, so it’s really galling to have someone do this to it. And also because, well, cars are like people to me, so now I feel like someone hurt MAH BEBE.
And so ends another week.
Other Things I Did This Week:
- Dropped a full bottle of bright pink nail polish onto the tiled kitchen floor.
- Dropped 9 – NINE – uncapped tubes of lipstick onto the cream carpet in the office.
- Got one of the nine lipsticks on my top, too. Well, I couldn’t let the carpet have ALL the fun, could I?
- Hit my ankle so hard against the leg of the bed that I seriously thought I’d broken it (the ankle, I mean, not the bed…), and would never walk again. I’m fine, though. Embarrassed, obviously, but fine.
- Fell backwards off a chair I was standing on in order to reach something on a high shelf. Landed flat on my back, hurting my wrist and elbow in the process, but thankfully nothing else. This all seemed to happen in slow motion, so I was honestly just glad not to have broken my back, seriously. I spent the rest of the night worrying that I had a concussion, and would die in my sleep. I’m, er, not allowed to stand on chairs any more…
So, in other words, I may not be a security risk to malls, but it seems I AM a security risk to my own self. GOD.
After all of that, I’m thinking next week has to be better. I mean, it HAS to. Right?