Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sanity or Lack Thereof

Several very fun things happened at work yesterday.

1.) Creepy Bald Guy learned my name. He sets off my Perv-Dar like crazy - I make an effort to not be around him, and was very discouraged to find he knew my name. He asked to use the bathroom (always does when he comes in).

"Thanks," he said as I was unlocking it. "I just went to that cafe next door and ate, and I really gotta go."

Dude. Please don't tell my why you want to use the bathroom. I think I can figure it out.

2.) The Man in Black came in to use the bathroom, as he does (I'm seeing a trend). I asked how he was doing.

"Good. I'm doing a show at the Blackbird [Gallery] this weekend. Acid rap. It's going to be scary."

He was clearly thrilled at how scary it was going to be.

3.) Million Dollar Hobo came in again. He wore old sweats, new stink, and few teeth. He first showed up last week and asked my manager if we had change for a million-dollar bill, hence the nickname. No, sorry, we don't, said Manager. Okay, said Million Dollar Hobo. I'll take it to the bank and get change.

When he came in yesterday, it didn't take long to find he hadn't gotten the change he sought (true of us all, brother). He held a CD player in one hand and a squishy, sloshy paper cup of coffee in the other.

"Do you have cards you can put money on?" He rocked side to side a bit.

"You mean like gift cards? Yes."

"Well, I've got a million-dollar bill, aaaaand I took it to the bank and they couldn't verify it. And I live over at the halfway house and the guy who owns it gave me the million-dollar bill. And he said it was a gift and I don't have to pay him back, and I want to get some things for my nieces and nephews. So do you have a way to verify it?"

If the bank doesn't, we sure don't. "No, I'm sorry."

"Well, I'll come back in with some change sometime."

At first, hearing him talk about his million-dollar bill made me laugh to myself. He thinks his million-dollar bill is real and isn't even considering it might be fake. Then I thought of how he's really clinging to its reality - wouldn't I do the same, if I had very few possessions and/or sanity? I wasn't about to tell him it was fake; let him have his daydreams.

But then, consider this: he came to a bookstore with it, to get gifts for people. I'm sure he's been to every other store in town, but he came to get things for other people, rather than going to get false teeth or a place to live. Sometimes I think the crazies are more sane than sane people.

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