Thursday, December 16, 2010

Tis the Season to...Catch Up with the Mentally Ill

I was in a rush this morning, and although all of you assume I go to the grocery store looking GREAT in my tiara and hotpants, today my hair was a bit of a fright. I was comparison shopping for high end baking chocolate to continue my love affair with the PW truffles and butter toffee and was literally RACING back and forth between aisles, muttering to myself like a crazy person with bad hair.

I made my selection and was headed back to put the non-sale candy bars back when I saw JJ (names have been changed to protect the mentally unbalanced..and me FROM the mentally unbalanced) racing TOWARD me down the same aisle. We physically collided. I smiled and said hi, as I have known JJ since junior high, and seem to run across him randomly about every two years. He looked overly happy to see me in my candy bar and bad hair frenzy and said "Hey, I was trying to chase you down!". Huh? While JJ and I know each other because he annoyed me daily when he sat behind me in Mr. Hall's 8th grade Social Studies class, we weren't friends in school. In fact, i don't know WHO JJ was friends with, as he was a bit of an oddity even then. He was a smidge of 'Bender' in The Breakfast Club, all about the inappropriate language and classroom outbursts and also like some of the folks I see on the 16th street mall in Denver. Except friendlier, like that guy who talks to you the whole flight. Mix that all together. 

A little Bender, plus...

Talky guy on plane, plus...

This sweet specimen = JJ

This crazy JJ fellow is always happy to see me, and I must admit, it is always an adventure seeing him. I saw him many years ago when I had first returned to the area. I was working at a bank, which was the worst job I have ever held. It was stifling. From the lowly teller line, I could see JJ sitting, slumped in a chair in the loan, looking bored, his foot up on a chair leg in the waiting area. He waved, I waved and then slunk back to my prison of a job. He didn't look nervous...just annoyed to have been kept waiting by the 21 years old. As I left for lunch, i caught a glimpse of JJ, riding down the road on a new (to him) motorcycle. It wasn't fancy, but he looked like a kid on Christmas Day as the wind whipped his Bender style haircut. He was grinning hugely, and gave me a big military style salute. The loan was for this bike, and he has gotten it. Of course he had. 

In the grocery aisle, JJ didn't let my shock bother him one bit, and instead launched into a story about (I think?) quitting smoking. I smiled and said "good for you", which only inspired more talking about the following things:

(Please picture me smashed against the spice racks, holding 6 giant candy bars against my chest with a terrified smile on my face, trying to look relaxed. Add a lot of nodding)

 - Murder (I suggested adding murder to his quitting smoking list since our reunion is in a few years, but he said it was OK, since no one would find the bodies. Seriously.)

 -  Dominating the scrap iron business - he felt his success could also lead to retribution by his competitors and would need to start "carrying a gun again." Yep, he said again.
 - His Girlfriend - he loves this one, so they are NOT going the "ripping each other's clothes off" route this time. She has had an extended illness, so there may or may not be an issue with her legs - I was unclear on that. However, he did tell me she was beautiful with long blond hair (i thought of my own shaggy hair at this moment - WHY?), and that her t*ts were just were just where they should be (ahem.). Most Excellent. We agreed I had probably heard enough descriptors at that point. (OK, maybe I said that.) He threw his head back and laughed, saying "Stacie, you are cracking me up!"

 - Several physical altercations - i can't really describe what I heard here, as he was getting pretty animated.  I did hear every swear word I know, even the ones you NEVER hear...and especially not in the baking aisle at 9:15 in the morning. He was acting out some of the fighting, so he was pointing his finger one inch from my face as he demonstrated the tirade he gave to someone who had it coming. I know my eyes were freakishly wide, although I was trying to pretend this was all old hat to me. ((Nervous giggle, while looking around nervously)) Passersby seemed to be considering dialing 911.

 - Drug use - not his, but a lot of other people who were "gobbling up 'shrooms in the poolhouse" (Poolhouse?? in Wyoming?) and "taking more than their TIME.. (wink!)", etc. I have some new catch phrases for drug use now, anyhow.

 - Financial Stability - I should be honest and say that I know not a thing about JJ, including where he lived or lives. His father was also a bit of an eccentric, lived out of town on land with a spray painted graphic (and misspelled) sign to potential trespassers at the entrance.  I can't say if either were financially set as I was told today. However, maybe they are? According to JJ, it's remarkable. And why wouldn't I believe it? He has told me everything else this morning.

 Do you have a good visual? I hope so. Don't be afraid. Although JJ has apparently put the smack down on many, and seems slightly off balance, here is the weirdest thing:

Seeing JJ made my morning today. As I shared the story with others who knew JJ from back in the day, I couldn't stop smiling. As I write this, I still can't. JJ is a colorful character and a part of my history, and made the effort to chase me down at 9:15 am, even though he had finished his shopping JUST to share a bit of time telling me how things are going and even to ask a bit about me. JJ is a character, but one that made my mundane morning a little less mundane, you know?

Merry Christmas JJ. It was nice to see you. Please don't kill anyone in 2011.  


ladymadonna99 said...

LOL!!! I think I may know who JJ is, and may I say kudos to you for being more charitable to him than I am to MY high school stalker, BM. Of course, BM isn't amusingly crazy, just incessantly annoying...

Great blog, Stacie!

ladymadonna99 said...

Uh, this is Shawna, btw. That was kind of like calling the wrong cell phone number and then realizing it and hanging up and then the person calls you back and is all "Who is this?" and then you're like, "Well, who is this?" and they're all "Well, you called me, so who are you?" and... yeah.

I'm chillin' with a glass of merlot. ;)

The Onion said...

A friend who was in the store in line behind JJ reported to me later that JJ was checking out, saw me race by and said "hold the phone! I HAVE to talk to Stacie". I am still in awe that JJ feels we are this tight. JJ is my peeps, apparently.

Trena said...

So glad you joined facebook again made my day reading I love this blog! I don't know who JJ is I can only image but this is to funny!

Anonymous said...

Ilove onions you know! pharmacy

Anonymous said...

...or 2012.
Seriously, though, I'm glad you were kind. JJ could be a weirdo or he could be a perfectly normal person with autism. I'm also glad you described him in all his hilarious detail in your blog!!

Lady Goo Goo Gaga said...

well.....apparently you are the nicest person ever....
I dont know what else to say