I’m pretty experienced with Mooching, both being the Mooch-er and being the Mooching target.
Hell, my best friend from High school mooched off of me all the time.
She did it well.
I know how to do it well.
And you may be wondering what exactly I mean by doing it well.
I don’t mean she’s good at getting all my food/drink from me, because THAT’S not Mooching well. THAT is being irritating. That is being a Mooch 😡
What I am, is a Mooch 😉
To Mooch well you have to be happy with getting a small amount. If you get too greedy, no one will be willing to give you any of their snacks, they won’t be willing to share with you.
People mirror other people’s attitudes too much to be able to share well with a greedy person, and while you may be able to get away with it one or two times, if you’re consistently greedy, no one will want to share with you.
Kasia and I are fine with mooching small amounts, we’re the best kind of Moochers; the kind that gets jokingly referred to as Moochers, but don’t have anyone getting annoyed at us for it.
One thing you learn when Mooching, is that there’s always some sort of equality. It’s symbiotic.
I let Kasia Mooch off of me, and she lets me do the same. With others, They let me mooch off of them, and I let them complain about their problem(s), and do my best to help if I can. Or some other kind of equalling action is taken.
Now that I’m older and legal, one example is between Meghan and I. I let her drink my Rum, and She lets me drink her Vodka. She’s more of a vodka drinker, and I’m a rum drinker, so it works out well to mooch off of each other.
It’s a trade.
But there are some who go beyond being a Bad Mooch.
A regular Bad Mooch is a Moocher who takes way too much. They take enough that it could be considered just giving the person something, and that involves key phrases like “paying me back” or “Buy me one later” or “Owe Me One”
These are not things that are said in regards to Mooching. These are things said in favours and borrowing, in Mooching it’s so little it’s not even said, it’s an unwritten code, a secret handshake, an inside joke of sorts. So when a Mooching incident gets into that sort of territory, it’s irritating.
It’s what makes them a bad Mooch.
What makes them a worse Mooch can be one or both of two things:
1) They Mooch expensive things.
2) How they go about Mooching.
Mooching expensive things is bad form. It’s like someone gets a slice of $15 cake and you eat most of it. If you’re not in the least bit remorseful about it, or are cocky about it, it’s more than irritating, it’s something that gets you put into “That Annoying Person” category in people’s minds.
That’s right. People’s. Not just the person you Mooched off of.
Because when you’re in the Annoying Person category, it means people complain about you to others. People you never even met now have preconceived notions about you and your character.
There is one such person in THAT category for me, and it’s gotten to the point that I get pissed off when even thinking about her.
For the record, I didn’t much like her that much in the first place. She doesn’t really have much of a personality (in that she really doesn’t even try to contribute to any conversation, and is the kind of person that when you get them a present for their birthday, you just get them some sort of generic chocolate, because you have no clue what the hell they even like), and never initiates any sort of hang-out or activity. I mentioned her in my post about skating HERE, she’s the one who walks on ice.
Sometimes it feels like she just sort of latched onto us and just never let go.
The few things I have gotten from her is that she really doesn’t drink.
She said this in a different way than my sister does.
My sister says it because she doesn’t like drinking. She’s the sort who says ‘yuck’ when offered any sort of alcoholic beverage, and it’s been a life choice for her that I accept even if I don’t understand it.
Melissa says “I don’t drink” while eyeing my Bacardi Breezer with some curiosity.
So I was like “You know what? You want to some? If you don’t like it I can finish it.” And she tried it, liked it, and that was that.
I’m okay with sharing alcohol. I don’t like drinking alone, and it is a pretty social thing. Eleanor, who does drink, drinks wine, and doesn’t get as drunk as either Meghan or I, but she has fun with it.
One time, it was decided that because we had the time and the lessening of work to do it, we were going to have a drinking night. We didn’t actually call it a drinking night but that’s pretty much what it was. Other nights were less planned, but they were on days when classes wouldn’t be a problem.
So, since I was going to the nearest LCBO on a day when I didn’t have classes, I asked Meghan, Eleanor, and Melissa if they wanted anything. If I’m remembering correctly, Eleanor wanted me to grab her a Girls Night Out (a weird wine, and I’m not really a wine drinker, but to each their own), and I’m pretty sure Meghan wanted me to grab her more Vodka, and maybe something else, but this was a while ago.
Melissa said “Oh, no thanks, I’ll just have whatever you’re getting.”
… well, no, that’s not actually how this works.
Alcohol can get expensive.
I enjoy liquor and mixed drinks, so I was planning on getting a few Breezers, some spiced rum to go in Coke Zero, some Disaronno to mix with Orange Juice, and more apple juice to go with the Fireball I already had.
In case you’re underage or don’t buy alcohol much, straight liquor is expensive, and already mixed drinks are pretty cheap comparatively. Liquor is expensive like this because it’s expected that it’ll last you a while, it’s expected that it’ll be mixed, and it just makes sense when already-mixed drinks are one-night deals.
So when I ask if anyone wants me to grab them something, well after I’ve let everyone try sips and glasses of what I like and have had during other drinking nights, I expect that they’re going to give some sort of yea or nay, yea meaning that when I bring out the receipt they’ll be paying me back, nay meaning they’re bringing their own.
Because you don’t need to be drunk to enjoy yourself on drinking nights.
So when Melissa says that she’ll just have what I’m having, I’m thinking that, okay, you know what? Perhaps she’s just planning on sipping tonight. I can spare orange juice and a shot of Disaronno, I can spare a Breezer.
But I was mistaken. This was not the case.
Because when I say that I’m okay with sharing alcohol, I don’t mean that I’m okay with being treated like an open bar.
Melissa drank about 3/4 of my Disaronno, a great deal of my mixed-drinks, a third of what was left in my still pretty full Fireball, and then also had quite a bit of Eleanor’s wine.
“I don’t drink” is something she still says.
Another thing she said that particular night, was “Wow that’s lot of alcohol,” and from anyone else, I would expect that that’s an expression similar to saying “wow were going to get dunk tonight!” or at least that something like that would be the subtext.
When she said it, the subtext was
“…You’re an alcoholic.”
This is an irritating thing, especially after she’s drunk so much of my booze.
This is an especially irritating thing when, after drinking so much of my booze, she doesn’t even think to pay me back for all the alcohol she’s drunk.
Because, at the very least (and this is being generous), she’s had about $50 of alcohol from me.
To be more realistic, it’s somewhere between $70 and $80.
So, in case you’ve missed it (or else are now thinking I’ve now decided to only talk about alcohol), Melissa has 1) mooched quite a bit off of me without reciprocating in some way, 2) has mooched an expensive thing, 3) has Mooched while affecting an annoying holier-than-thou attitude, and 4) has been doing 1-3 while not even being that fun to be around.
She is firmly in that Annoying Person category I was talking about.
So right now I’m back in Ottawa, and tonight I’m going to be hanging out with Eleanor (who has made the decision herself to be roommates with Melissa–I don’t actually know if she’s ever been annoyed with her before…), and Melissa… and trying my best not to let this annoyance show.
So that’ll be fun.
Don’t be a bad Mooch, or else you might annoy someone who has a blog.