The Perils of Being Confused as an iPhone Repair Guy

As I get older, I wonder if I am becoming more cynical. The world is full of strange people and I used to love the world for this. However, in recent years, I’ve had to learn to be very careful of the strange people washing up on the shore of my life. Not because they are necessarily evil incarnate, but because they seem to becoming stupid to the point of dangerous.

Let me use an example.

I live next door to an illegal immigrant from Eastern Europe. He works in construction and is very friendly. However, he always needs something. So far, he has perpetually borrowed a phone charger, my toolset, and too much food to inventory. He also seems to think that I am a magician with anything electronic.

One day he needed help setting up a Google account on his phone. I literally did nothing but walk him through the steps. Then the next day I had a man from Ghana hammering on my front door. When I opened it, he held out his phone and started asking me to fix it for him.

Naturally, I explained I couldn’t. However, this hasn’t stopped several other Serbs, North Africans, and a French person (who all work in the construction industry) hammering on my door between 4am and 8am (when their shift starts), before pleading with me to ‘fix’ their phones also.

Now, I have tried to be civil with this matter. I realized that my neighbor was telling his work friends that I am some kind of iPhone genius and I told him to stop. Sadly, he didn’t and then today happened…

At 3pm the mobile grocery store driver bleeped his horn and I went out to restock on water and essentials. He parks a little way up the street and as I got there, I noticed a man behind me starting to knock at my front door. I shouted for him to stop and he started shouting something in a quite aggressive way at me. (He didn’t speak English and I don’t speak his language). Then to my horror, he opened my door and went inside. As he did, I heard my dog Chico go crazy. Then I heard a yelp, dropped my tins of tuna and raced back.

Inside, I found the man coming back from the end of my corridor shouting “He Bite!” - Meaning that this guy has literally trespassed in and searched my house for me, and literally has the audacity to complain that my Chihuahua has attacked him. Then he proceeds to get out his phone, hold it at me, and start shouting "Please, you fix for me."

Now, I would like to say that I embraced my inner caveman and threw this guy out onto the street. However, the man in question was at least a foot taller than me and obviously had no limits. Thankfully, Mario, my mobile grocer, had seen what had happened, followed me, and did the throwing out for me. Maltese is also nearly identical to the language spoken by my home intruder, and so out on the street, he got a verbal lesson in basically, how not to be an idiot. (Actually, I think a lot of racial slurs started flying also, but I’m being as PC as possible here.)

(My dog has been a bit more reserved than usual but is A-okay by the way).

For me, this was the final straw. I’ve asked my neighbor to make it clear that I am not an iPhone repair person to whoever he has told I am. I was also a bit put out when after I asked for my toolset back when my toilet and shower broke a while ago, he said no because it was at his work and to this day hasn’t returned it.

For this reason, I confronted him a few hours ago and made it abundantly clear that the next time I have him or anyone he sends knocking at my door (or waltzing in unannounced), I’m reporting him to the police. I even did 30 push-ups beforehand to look a bit bulked up and super serious. :slight_smile:

Needless to say, I have likely now made an enemy of the local Serbian community. However, in retrospect, I have been a pushover for far too long. Not just with my neighbor, but with several other people. This includes freelance clients. And what has it got me but escalating situations (which in freelancing make me poorer), and in real life put me and my furry loved one in the way of actual physical harm?

For this reason, I’ve decided to test being a horribly mean and self-centered person for the rest of 2019. Of course, I won’t reallistically accomplish this. What I am going to do though, is completely put an end to all favors, acts of generosity and my usual 'just let it go’ mentality.

I personally feel sad about this. However, it seems like the more entertaining I am of people who lack basic common sense, the more it inevitably results in me being walked all over. The only question is, will I profit financially by being 100% self-centered? - And if I do, might I become a horrible person in the long-term?

Well, Eastern Europeans don’t have common sense when it comes to asking for favors. Especially, the ones coming from Ex-Yugoslavia. This lies in the old communist system, where everyone relied on trading favors and helping each other a lot.

I don’t like saying this, but most of my fellows Serbians, Macedonians, Bulgarians, and such, think that people like you which come from the Western world have money growing on their trees. That’s why they always try to steal things, abuse the system, and don’t have “acceptable manners” to live in an international community. Here is an example, in Ohrid, which is a popular tourist destination in Macedonia - taxi drivers charge western people a lot more than they would charge a local. They actually justify this by saying that westerners are rich people. This attitude drives me crazy, that’s the very same reason why I would like to relocate in a different country once I am done with my studies.

On another note, in our “tru slav” world it is common for many people to ask you for help, just because a friend recommended or said so without asking you before doing so. It’s crazy, in my opinion, the problem in our corrupted system itself and the lower standard of living. Most probably, I would have been like that if I haven’t lived in the US for a short time, and didn’t travel.

I just hate the mentality of the Macedonians, Greeks, Serbians, Bulgarians, Albanians… It’s wrong on so many levels.

BTW: I exclude the Western Slavs from this crazy mentality, as they are kinda Germanized, and they have a lot better manners. If you compare them with us, we had been ruled by the Ottomans for a couple of centuries. And the Ottomans weren’t culturally developed as the west was. I have spoken with a Turkish person, and he agreed on this - although, he is a liberal person. :upside_down_face:

1 Like

I get that and I like it. (I also didn’t mean any offense by mentioning the Eastern European angle) Today was just too much. It’s not about someone asking for help. It’s about what really felt like someone aggressively demanding a service I don’t offer.

It’s like me walking into someone’s house who just happens to work in a supermarket and shouting “food now!” - It just doesn’t happen. In fact, its the walking into my apartment which I just don’t get. I rarely lock my door when I’m in, as I have friends call in and shout “hello?” Now I feel like I have to keep myself on lockdown.


Indeed, that’s a lot worse than anything I have said in my previous reply. If you had ever watched “Only Fools & Horses” there was a quote about Trigger - “God creates some people without a part of the brain, but he created Trigger without a brain”. Or the quote was something along those lines.


I have and my most horrendous memory from being a kid is my dad at a used car showroom taking a robin reliant (the three-wheel car) seriously. He didn’t buy it (thank God).

Trigger is actually a lot like my best Maltese friend. He just says his mind. Once we were in a bar talking to a Canadian girl who had just moved here. Out of the blue (while talking about job opportunities) he said she should be a pornstar.

I now make sure he goes home early if I ever strike up conversation with a potential date. :slight_smile:


I hope not here. :scream:

Poor Chico. :cry:

That sounds like bartering. :thinking: Or was it one sides?

I wish.

Would that be Cat?

1 Like

Cat is a fellow South Slav - Macedonian, Serbians, Bosniaks, Montenegrins (which are Serbs), Bulgatians, Croatians, and Slovenes (although Slovenes don’t have those manners). We, South Slavs are the crazy cousins. For example, Serbians, Croatians, Montenegrins, and Bosniaks - speak different dialects of the same language. However, all of them disagree, and say they have different languages, and hatred among them

West Slavs are the Polish, Slovak, and Czechs.

East Slavs are Russians, Ukrainians, Belarusians.

1 Like

Thanks for clarifying that Mr. Freaky. :slightly_smiling_face:

Heading out for the weekend. See you later.

1 Like

Oh my gosh! My heart is thumping, I thought he hurt Chico! What a nutjob. I don’t care which country you grew up in - entering someone’s home uninvited is called trespassing. In some countries they :gun: for that!

No you won’t. I’ll just :hugs: you more if you act grumpy here. Like I will to Investor, who has :cloud_with_lightning: off and lurking silently, waiting for a sign that we miss him. :slight_smile:

Well, typically, we have the person ask their friend first as a courtesy or sort of like an intro before asking for a favor. Believe it or not, in the states, complete strangers help each other out, sometimes too much. Not all but most of us are pretty generous people.

I guess it’s the middle-class syndrome. All politician’s fight for our votes, we are the bigger tippers, we spend the most money and most middle to upper middle class can easily afford a Lexus, Mercedes and other semi-luxury cars without going into debt. I’m proud to be a working middle class who knows the value of money and the fact I started as a hotel maid to where I am today, makes me more aware of those in service industry and appreciate them more.



Btw there is some problem in my iphone, can u fix/help? :slightly_smiling_face:

Now dont tell you are gonna charge me… I mean we’re friends duh… :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

Why, of course! Just find out where I live and break and enter my home for an appointment!

Seriously, the phone thing is just insane. I get the impression that some people who have called think I can do some magical hack which will get them free phone calls. - A bit like an ultimate case of Chinese whispers. That said, I guess this is better than the whispered reputation I had in my last village. There people thought I was a drug dealer.

In fact, I think I’d make an excellent drug dealer. I lived for 4-years with people assuming I was into all sorts of illicit activities. The police never investigated once. If I had just got a few UV strip lights, I could have retired on the profits of having my own grow house.

Sadly, in real life I’m a bit more Doug Wilson than Nancy Botwin :wink:

1 Like

Freaky, you have no idea how common that culture is in desiland aka subcontinent. I am on my phone right now so I’ll keep it short but here if you know something and you’re good at it or at some good post, it is one of your moral obligation to offer your services for free not just to your close friends and relatives but to their and their and their relatives and neigbours too. And its always a pita to get rid of them.

@regiadd I really want you to write an article on this topic "how to say No to people without appearing bad or hurting someone’s sentiments.

1 Like

I’m better at writing fiction, but I can hire someone to write one for me. Let me just head on over to my “Best of 5r Article Writer’s” post! :smile:


Those are the worst

1 Like

Err… While you’re there could I put in a order for 20 cryptocurrency blogs and a write up concerning the legacy of the 2012 London Olympics?

I didn’t realize we could request things like this. It’s going to make my life so much easier! :wink:

I swear I’ve been rolling with giggles catching up to all the forum post from yesterday. I missed all the fun because of some running around I had to do.

:thinking: Why 2012?

you lack two things to request something like that.

A. You need to be from subcontinent region.

B. You need to be in a close relation with G.

I qualify both. Hence the request. :sunglasses:

1 Like

I don’t know. It’s what some wacky client wants. The way things are going, they probably want a bio of of a specific athlete but won’t mention that until it’s revision dinner time.

1 Like

That’s because of the low standards in both mine and your region. That makes people do things like that.

I never knew how whacky some of the buyers were on 5r.

My stuff sounds rather boring now. All I ever wanted was things like:

  • How to write a bio, blurb, opening paragraph, etc.
  • Best theme parks in the world, etc.

I need to start getting more exotic! Let me see, perhaps I need to get some of my gal pals to come up with unique articles! :grin::rofl:

1 Like