Friday, June 29, 2012

Overheard - Really!

I heard her talking from thirty feet away.  She was over by the men’s polo shirts.  I thought she was talking to a friend across the aisle.  But no, she was talking on her phone.

“…I was married 16 years the first time but all he wanted to do was drink and party.  I just couldn’t live with that.”  After listening to this woman for 30 seconds I was ready for a drink too.  She wandered around the men’s department of Macy’s feigning to look at clothes.  She wasn’t really shopping; I don’t think she even knew where she was.

“…I was remarried for 10 years; I lost him 7 years ago.”  Lost him?  He ran away!

“…I’m just looking for companionship.  It gets a little lonely talking to the cat.”  Now I finally get it.  She’s negotiating a date!

“Oh, I like stock car racing, tractor pulls; I’m open to a lot of things.” 

I had enough and moved to another part of the store to look at shoes.  What is it about a phone that puts people into another world?  This lady would never dream of standing on a street corner shouting out her life history.  Would she reveal her personal life to clientele at Starbucks while sipping her latte?  Maybe she would.  Maybe she was trolling and the phone was a fake.  I quietly deliberated whether I should try on a pair of shoes.  I was not inquiring of the world in general or of other shoppers - just mulling it over in the sanctity of my own mind…should I try on these shoes?

”I can be a lady, but I can also be a tomboy.”  There she was again.  Was she stalking me?

“…I had a friend, and after a couple dates the guy wanted her to move in with him….”  I didn’t find out if she did but the guy must have liked her.  Just then a sales clerk asked if I needed any help.  I said no and we both stood silently watching the talking phone-head. 

“…I never tell where I live.  I always meet in a public place - somewhere about half-way.  It’s just my rule.”  Don’t worry lady.  One look at you and he isn’t even going to care where you live.  Unless he truly is a blind date.

Time and space do not allow me to tell all I learned of this person.  It was just an afternoon at the mall.  If I had sufficient fortitude I’d spend more time there and write a blog about what I see and hear.  But I don’t and so I won’t and you will just have to go yourself if you are desperate for twisted entertainment.  But be careful.  If you are capable of feeling compassion (not exactly one of my strong points) you may actually feel a little sorry for some of the people you will see.  This woman wasn’t so much trolling as reaching out.  No - screaming out.  She desperately wanted to relate to somebody.  Anybody!  What choices led her to this place of loneliness?  She wanted to feel alive, to be loved; to be a part of something bigger than herself.  To be able to share, to know there is someone who cares.  But it wasn’t me. 

I just walked away.

No comments: