Thursday, October 11, 2007

What It Means To Be In Love.

I need a lot of sleep... I would say realistically 10 hours a day. For real.

Today I slept from around 11 to a little before 1 and then got up, a little groggy, and went to the CVS to pick up a witches brew of serotonin and histamine drugs for myself. I'm working on a lineup like the photo below, with my own bottles from the same CVS.

leo's mantle with medications 2 web leo

At the pharmacy counter, two women were giving out flu shots; a young and very beautiful African-American woman with long hair and an older and heavier white woman in a housecoat. As I got up to the counter, a crazy old woman in a blond wig and a tube top under an open sweater, probably in her late 70s, was harassing the flu shot givers and going at the housecoat shot giver.
(Please note that while the tube top wearer's look was interesting, and is far cry from the dominate look among over 70 South Philly women (housecoat, rolled down socks and scuffs), a tube top in any age group here is not such an atypical look that one would think "She's crazy!")

Here are some of the quotes I heard from crazy tube top...
"You're a fucking fat pig!" "You need to lose that weight, you're fat" and "You look like a fat piece of shit." Oh my GOD, this lady was out of her fucking mind!

The housecoat flu shot giver was saying "Thank You!" and laughing but the woman who was receiving the flu shot at that moment was NOT amused and neither was the other flu shot giver.

As a matter of fact, the young flu shot giver told me that this same crazy tube top woman had hovered around them when they were at the Pathmark, cursing and harassing them, and the young flu shot giver had to tell her to leave or she would call the cops. And she said that the crazy lady had parked next to them in the Pathmark parking lot...which prompted a young Hispanic man getting an injection right into the tattoo on his left bicep to say with real shock, "She can drive?!?!" and the young flu shot giver said "Mmmmhmm, and she can follow the same route that brought her to that parking spot right back out."

So the housecoat flu shot giver was administering a shot to a old woman who had a hairdo much like my late Aunt Midge, hardly any hair, practically bald, but the little that's there is high and styled like a cocoon that's just begun to be spun, allowing a person to see right through it. The little bit of hair this lady had was dyed jet black. Leaving with my giant bag of pills, I heard housecoat flu shot giver say, "I've got diabetes and they think I might have uterine cancer" to the woman as she was swabbing her injection site with an alcohol pad...the woman with the black see through hair grabbed her arm, hard, and said, "It'll all work out, Hon."

When I turned up the hair aisle, the crazy harassing tube top lady was standing with a NUN IN FULL HABIT! Obviously, I took a photo with my cell phone immediately. And I almost went back to show the flu shot givers, but decided they'd had enough of this lady. I eased past the nun pretending to look at shampoos and heard crazy harassing tube top lady say to the nun, "When G-d brought me back..." They were holding hands super tight and the nun gave me a look of long suffering with a little bit of "help me!" in it. So much for patience of a saint.




At the front of the store, two women in line were hugging each other as tight as the nun and crazy tube top were holding hands. They were hugging and rocking back and forth with great joy and speaking in Spanish.

And the cashier turned and yelled to someone I couldn't see in the makeup aisle, "Don't give me a dirty look! You're getting chicken cutlets now!"

13 comments:

Mark said...

:)), never a dull moment in Philly.

Carla said...

See, and ordinarily I'd read "old woman in a blonde wig and tube top" and want to love her.

This kind of meanness increasingly makes me feel violent.

eniac said...

aaaaahhhhh... philly.

zs said...

I know Carla! I saw her and was shocked that she was so horrible. Really. Even though she has mental illness, she's not just mean, she was definitely hurting the woman she was addressing... seriously, she might have fucking cancer, obviously is thinking about it enough to tell a stranger and this nut is attacking her!

However, rest assured that there was a much better feeling when I left and her meanness felt impotent, unlike so many times when you can carry it with you for a long time after. I can't speak for the woman on the receiving end of it, but it felt like she was addressing real things and not listening to crazy wig and tube top. Or maybe I'm just thinking that for my own benefit.

Regardless, I wanted to punch crazy wig and tube top in the face... and I'm not kidding. But I think we're on the same page after the "little pieces of toilet paper left on the floor" discussion. As I get older my tolerance for mean-spiritedness gets lower and lower.

Patti said...

I can't stop wondering about the chicken cutlets! Ah, Philly...

Reysh Alef said...

Philly is one big mental ward. Use it to your advantage. Where else can I walk around in a bowler hat carrying ten tons of antique camera gear and not even be noticed. When it does get ugly, I just say to myself: "My day is complete" and move along.

Andrea said...

Crazy people are everywhere. Justin and I walked into the coffee pub downtown and this insane woman (a fellow customer), about 60-65 years old, started threatening Justin yelling, "I know what you did! Oooooh I know who you are! I'm going to report you to the FBI. Stay away from me. I'm going to report you to the FBI and the CIA!" But not to worry because Justin replied, "I'm going to call the Superfriends Network on you." That's right people, when in doubt, my husband turns to the Superfriends.

Oh, and in true California fashion, no one in the entire place said or did anything. Everyone kept their heads down and ignored the entire situation, even after the woman left. No one, even the store owner, said ANYTHING to us. Weird California.

The chicken cutlet comment is icing on the cake. I need to start using that around the house. "Now you're getting chicken cutlets!" I love it.

zs said...

AG, you know full well the "chicken cutlet" comment was yelled in an accent that includes "sasage" as "sausage."

For CHRIST SAKE! When are you getting home?!?!

larry said...

Can't type now ... I'm frying chicken cutlets

Gerard Brown said...

Reminds me of dinner in a taco place in Chicago where someone (I like to think she was crazy, but maybe not) decided I was a significant threat to society and began an agitated surveillance. She finally started scribbling her accusations on a napkin which she walked over and slammed down on my plate before turning on her heal and storming out,cursing at me for having found her there.

Needless to say, I had to find another Mexican restaurant to visit for the rest of the time I lived there...

addie said...

i love reysh's outlook on craziness in philly. i'll try that next time something insane happens to me. this post made my day complete, and it's not even 10am! i'm trying not to laugh out loud at my desk and get in trouble.

Anonymous said...

Long ago I discovered that the world is full of "good people" and "not so good people." Watching the news we see a lot of the not so good and a smidgen at the end of the do-gooders...their stories usually get buried in the local section and don't make the headlines.When I hear about people like this I feel really sorry for them. But we all have a purpose in life and sometimes the "crazy ones" are here for a reason that we don't get. Hopefully when we see an encounter like this it will make the rest of us act a little nicer to those in our life and reach out to others. Besides, it makes us look a lot saner in comparison.
I'm gonna go hug my Zoe and Zac - that always makes me fel better.
:) Cuz Caryn

urban vegan said...

This is why I love Philly so much.