The Theory of Chaos

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

They always want to talk to me

She’s wearing hospital slippers and a stocking cap and has about three miles of white hair. Her face is sun-toasted and she walks with a shuffle. There’s a half-dozen other customers waiting in this Chinese take-out place, but there’s never a moment’s doubt – she’s coming to talk to me.

She shows me her cup. She shows me her Ziploc bag that holds dark yarn and a pink sandal she found in the garbage. She shows me an empty Coca-Cola Zero bottle that she’s taped pictures of the Blue Man Group to. She says one of them’s her son. She points at the “Zero” on the label and tries to win me over to her point of view that One is better than Zero.

She tells me all about the room she lives in, which is very clean, and the house where it is – which is her mother’s house. Only not really, she confides, it’s actually Arnold Schwarzenegger’s mother’s house.

I might not have been so polite or attentive, except that she started the conversation by railing that there’s too many people in this world, and I couldn’t tell what else she had buried in that big bag of hers.


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