Sunday, September 24, 2006

Small tables

I do not enjoy it when you're at a restaurant in a moderate-sized group of people, and all they have are tiny tables that they've pushed together:

Diagram of small tables

This is pretty typical when you have more than six people in your party. I find it unpleasant, though, because I can't stand to look at the person on the other side of the table for too long; they're too close, and it's uncomfortable. So, I always end up looking at a person to his or her left or right for most of the meal; they're usually at the most comfortable distance.

With somewhat larger tables, like the ones at the cafeterias at work, it isn't as bad, though someone diagonal from me is still a bit more comfortable to look at.


Anonymous said...

I can't explain why, but I find something about this post very interesting.

Do you find that your reaction is always to anyone who is in that proximity to you, or are you bothered more by having someone you are not familiar with that close to you?

Do you find that you feel this when only sitting at tables? Or does there seem to be a certain level of closeness that you just don't like no matter what situation you are in (say for example - a movie theater)?

I could ask you a ton of questions on this....

Travis said...

I think it's actually just a physical thing rather than a psychological or emotional one. I find it uncomfortable to focus my eyes on a person so close for even moderate periods of time. I find myself having to stare past the other person sometimes if they're talking and no one else is there just because they're too close and it hurts my eyes.

But maybe it's all in my head.

The movie theatre is a very different situation; I'm not looking at the person I'm sitting next to. That's a very different uncomfortable situation; I don't like being horizontally cramped, and as I'm a big guy to begin with, this tends to happen in theatres. But, I'm perfectly fine if, for example, I have my arm around the other person; that's not uncomfortable.