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Outside the local Subway, I spot a young man bugging a couple of entering/exiting Subway customers for what I presume is money. Wanting a sandwich myself, I sigh and brace myself for his inevitable pitch and my automatic refusal.
I reach the door and listen to him mumble out some request, which surprisingly isn't for money. Is it...a "bud" he's asking for? "No, no, no man, I don't even mess with that stuff, I was askin' if you had a belt for sale?"
On the one hand, it's fantastic that a young man actually wants a belt. On the other hand, is he so out of touch with belt usage that he assumes people just carry around spares? I politely disappoint him and order a very tasty pastrami sandwich. (Note: the dude soon entered Subway asking for the bathroom, and when he learned it was in use, I half-expected him to shoot up the place in frustration but alas, peace prevailed.)
I'm at the local Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market, out of the hospital for less than 20 minutes. In the self-checkout line, a small guy about 35 or so appears behind me, complaining that an elderly woman had just cut in front of him in another line. It was almost like he was telling on her; like he hoped I could intervene or something (and no, he was not special needs.)
I just nodded and shrugged while the guy vented, until I finally said "It's too early for this kind of stuff, huh?" His response? "It's all good; the bus don't come for 20 minutes anyway." Then he returned to his original line, as I wondered WTH just happened.
All I wanted to do was some laundry. I've just arrived at the laundromat and am approaching the rear entrance with a bag of clothes. The co-manager of the place is seated on a nearby bench, and as I pass her, she says "No wash today."
This gal is a little...different, so I didn't really pay much attention. That is, until she followed that up with "It's Ugly People Day today; only ugly people can wash. You're too CUTE to go in!"
I did nothing to provoke this. And before you ask, this gal might have once been attractive, but not now at age 55 or so with at least 100 extra pounds on her.
Since I have to show my face there again, I smiled, replied "You got me!" and acted as if I enjoyed what just happened...smh.
LATE WINTER 2017
I'd just dropped the car off at the shop, and was waiting for the bus back home. Mind you, I'd walked close to a mile to arrive at this bus stop, and while I didn't quite stink, I wasn't exactly springtime fresh.
I stood there with my hoodie up over my head, hoping to minimize the chances of being accosted.
it didn't help.
A yellow-toothed, long-braided woman in her late 40's or so commented on how good I smelled. "Me?" I asked, confused. She confirmed yes, I'm the one she's referring to, and semi-flirtatiously makes more remarks about my scent. "I shouldn't smell good; I just walked a mile to get here," I said, hoping to end this interaction quickly.
"You mind if I take a whiff?" she asked, even though I knew she would do so regardless of what I said.
Still, I granted permission, and she did indeed sniff my person. "That IS you smellin' that good!"
I didn't know what to say, so I just shrugged and silently prayed for the bus to arrive in the next three seconds. It did soon come, and thankfully my new friend said not a word to me once on board. So now I've been sniffed by a stranger in public at the oddest of times. Yay me.
Walking toward the grocery when an aging female of questionable sanity calls out "AY!" twice. I ignore her until having to pass her. The following is verbatim. The female was Caucasian, speaking what she surely thought was English.
FEMALE: Romma dasnich?
FEMALE: Romma dasnich?
FEMALE: Ajaswa igoam.
I've put 50 feet between us when, unprovoked, the woman lets out three deafening scream-howls. Sorry, lady. If it means that much to you, next time I'll buy some of your romma dasnich.
I'm in line at our local Smart & Final. The woman in front of me and I exchange zero words during our three or so minutes proximous...until, while her items are being scanned, her lemonade rolls over the divider into my "section" of items.
When I finally notice this, I give her the drink back; she thanks me. A few seconds later, the woman—in total seriousness—asks me if she should use debit or credit. She wasn't after instructions; she wanted a decision. I had no idea why this was happening and blurted out "credit".
This was one of those moments where, reflecting on the encounter, I wondered if perhaps I don't get out enough and this is normal behavior. Or if it was some sort of joke or film reference. Surely, it couldn't be a woman asking a random guy to choose her method of payment just because he returned her lemonade...could it?
"People who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us that do.'" -- author/professor Isaac Asimov