I’m Not the Only Crazy Lady in the Room

I’m certain that inside of every woman there lives a crazy lady screaming to get out. Not your average mild mannered crazy lady, mind you, mumbling to herself as she shuffles down the aisles of the Piggly Wiggly. I mean full-on bat shit crazy lady.

Like that sweet grandma in the distance. Your brain says, “Harmless, Weird Hat, No Teeth — Aw look, she has a baby carriage with a pig in it!” But as you get closer, that sweet ole lady’s head spins on its axis, gnarly claws dig deep and she pulls you in close with the strength of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Spittle faced, she hisses that you are the devil’s spawn and she will feed you to her pig for supper. This is crazy you just can’t ignore.

Crazy is attracted to me like a zombie to human flesh. Take my weekly pilgrimage to Trader Joe’s. Pretty simple, right? Find food, stand in line, pay for food. Not so. I am waiting patiently in line, vaguely contemplating going back for some Inner Peas to sustain me for that long 5-minute ride home, when a seemingly normal 40-something sweatpants clad mom with toddler in tow hones in for the kill. Like an actor feeding off her audience, she looks pointedly at me and loudly exclaims, “You like him?” I nod, realizing it would be rude to say otherwise. “He’s Frank”, she hawks, “Everyone loves Frank, don’t they Frank, Frank is adorable. Wow, Frank loves you, he can’t stop looking at you, look at that, he really loves you more than me.”

I play along, smiling at little Frank, who frankly has not glanced at me once, being far more mesmerized by his sippy-cup. Playing the room, she announces, “I use Frank all the time to cut in line, he’s my sister’s son, I take him with me to the store, people just can’t resist, can you?” I hear the collective groan behind me as I whisper, “Sure go ahead, you only have one item.”

I am now hers for the feeding frenzy. “I like you, you helped me. I want to do something for you. That blonde hair, those eyes — you are not using them to your full potential. I shudder as she tousles my hair, roaring about the need for highlights and making circular motions under my eyes indicating the horrific severity of my wrinkles and bags. She whips out a hot pink card, crushing it to my hand — Cosmetologist. “Come see me — half price, big discount. I will make you beeeeuteeful.” Hell, I must need a lot of work.

After having had her fill of me, she turns her crazy to the poor 20-something check out boy sporting a fish necklace. “Ha, Jesus lover! I’m one too. Haha, and Jesus is a big black woman hahaha”. Now this is getting serious crazy. I call on my invisibility cloak but it is on the fritz. Finally, armed with her jar of coconut oil and little Frank waddling obliviously behind, she waves goodbye to her crowd. The show is over.

As I approach the register, the check out boy leans in and says, “She was wrong, I think you’re pretty.” I’ll take it! Sometimes crossing the street to avoid the crazy lady isn’t the best strategy. Go bravely to her, accept what comes. If she doesn’t feed your body parts to her pig, she just might make your day.

Tennessee Stone’s My Crazy Road Trip — Life After 50, where am I going and should I pack snacks

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.