the chaser

weirdnessSo i am walking to the store —

My regular route, sure it is through Hollywood, and kind of racy, but it is my zone. I think. And then this guy starts yelling at me. I cannot really hear him because, one, I am programmed to ignore strange men yelling at me from a block away just in case that will work and they will stop. And, two, because he is a block away, which, you know, makes intelligible conversation some problematic.

But he keeps yelling.

I keep walking.

He is on task though and runs to meet up with me.

This is problematic. He does not look entirely sane, he is running at me, and shouting. His skin is bad. He has not been eating right. And he is sweating too much. Something is off here. And I have not even evaluated his pupils. But.

I have to face this matter.

He wants to know where the library is. [This would be the library that on street cred shut down eighteen monhts ago for some IRS infringement I do not understand.] He is outside a bus station, though, so I am thinking he is kind of Woeful’s problem now. If you put bus, Hollywood, serious skin problems, and library together, definitely Woeful’s problem now. I point, say, Thataway. And keep walking.

He starts shouting.

I keep walking.

He keeps shouting.

I keep walking.

He now seriously runs, shouting, up behind me. Like, feet pounding the sidewalk runs, following me.

This is a young guy. Pretty healthy. Considering he is unsane. He is carrying something heavy too. Probably a backpack. Not a camper backpack. But one of those college jot around campus backpacks. I did not check it out hard. My main goal was to stay uninvolved. Now, however, I am involved. I have a twenty-something, probably about 180 pounds man, shouting at me, and running up on me from behind, on the street.

I hate this. It means I have to figure out whether I am in danger. It means I have to figure out how bad the danger is. It means, I might be about to enter a fight. And, this guy out weighs me by at least eighty pounds. Maybe a hundred. And could maybe really hurt me.

So I turn.

He wants further directions to the library. How many blocks.

This way. That way.

I do not believe him. I let him tell me. Then I just nod. Smile pretty. Say yes. And turn and walk away. Again.

This time he goes away.

I am on fight or flight adrenalin charge. The hair standing up on my arms. My neck. Places I do not even have hair. Still programmed to fight.

Knowing. I have to, after I go to the store? Walk back home carrying what I bought. And he will still be wandering around my neighborhood. Looking for the “library.”

Of course what I bought includes a twelve pack of Diet Coke.

You can do a lot of damage swinging a twelve pack of Diet Cokes.

I do not want to see him again.


where the art work comes from :
that is fight or flight by sue latta and if i can find a better link to her later
you will get it but right now no luck

33 Responses to the chaser

  1. I had to diet coke him officer. I hope you don’t see him again.

  2. max

    I do not like people who double out weigh me pounding up on me.

    The one thing about being small though is, if you ultimately do have to appear in a court of law?

    If you were a six foot seven guy who did cage fighting for a living, they could ream you. Wrongly, sure. There is no reason for a stranger to pinpoint you and pound down the street after you, more than once, and demand explanations for anything, at high volume, screaming and desperate. But, if you are a big guy and that happens and you defend youself? Kind of screwed.

    If you are a one hundred pound little blonde girl/teacher/writer who just punched that 200 pound crazy person’s windpipe out? It becomes more questionable as to whether it is quite approrpriate to go after you though. He was 200 pounds. She as 100. He approached her, twice, belligerantly. In attack mode.

    It is raining here. Hard. Real weather sounds.

  3. I know I just saw lightening. No guy should run after a single girl especially a small girl no mater how smart and friendly she looks.
    I mean we don’t give candy to children we don’t know……….. but crazy people aren’t rational.

    My ex used to wear his uniform to divorce court it worked every time! lol

  4. max

    I do not look smart and friendly. I look baseball hat busy and don’t talk to me.

  5. It’s your aura then……lol

  6. Really, you never know what is in their heads. clearly nothing good if they are screaming and chasing you down. You do have to do the math of the situation. Especially, in Hollyweird. My sister went to the Hollywood high. I know the type you are talking about, it’s not fun.

  7. max

    It is something. Ten people right there, and who did he start shouting at and running at? Me. Ignoring all others. Me.


    I do not know how to turn this off. I do not know even what it is. But I am a freaking lantern for crazy people.

    The problem is, I did not know if he was going to hit me. He was erratic, and belligerant, and — I did not know. So I was walking around in dazed and confused post adrenalin fight or flight mode for hours after.

  8. I am sorry Max, that’s exhausting and stirs the core of your being when you feel threatened like that. I am very glad you are safe now.

  9. I was in a situation like that in my car and I drove straight to a cop shop and not until then did they lighten up on me. I am very patient with traffic now. I can imagine you would not want to walk straight home not knowing where the lunatic was.

  10. I know him! I don’t know what it is about the crazies but a sure fire way to instantly spot a crazy is when they want to have a conversation with you from 30 yards away. When this happens you don’t even need to have your crazydar up. These people are blinding beacons of insanity.

    We have one lady who come in and starts asking us questions from the moment the elevator doors open about 30 feet away from the Reference Desk. She asks multiple questions as she walks towards us, without waiting for a response to any. This is another sign that something isn’t quite right is that these people also can not stay focused on any topic while they are “talking” to you.

    Another good example is our patron, “Special Ed.” Ed isn’t a vagrant though, he’s a young guy who just happens to have serious issues that his medication can’t quite keep in check.

    … Anyway, I’m glad you didn’t need to brandish your Coke, Max! Incidentally, I have no idea why a public library would close for tax reasons. We’re government institutions, so we don’t pay any taxes. I’m going to have to look into this out of professional curiosity…

  11. max

    That made no sense to me Woeful. People said the IRS closed it down and I was like, huh? Libraries do not pay taxes. They may have been confused.

  12. “Excuse me, ma’m, I’ve been trying to flag you down to tell you there’s a piece of spinach in your teeth that can be spotted a mile away! Now where’s the library?”

    Wouldn’t that be something.

  13. And who knew Diet Coke could give you wings…I could see this on a Chappelle type skit…

  14. I think we’re probably approaching this from the wrong direction. What probably happened was that the library closed due to a lack of tax funding. Public libraries are totally dependent on tax revenue to operate. I’ve been thinking about this, and this seems the likeliest explanation. Sadly, this happens way too often and libraries have to either cut back hours, or close. Right now, the libraries in Oregon are in big trouble as the Feds pulled all of their funding. Entire county systems have closed — Not good!

    LOL… I love that you sent the vagrant to a closed branch just to get rid of him. Well done!

  15. Are you 3 feet tall?

    I’m just wondering…

    This story reminds me of way too many encounters. I am a certified freak magnet.

    Fright or flight, indeed. I got that.

  16. max

    I am 5’6″ if I stand really straight and my hair is feeling frisky.

    Woeful, that makes sense. And yeah, there is something about someone trying to hold a conversation with you from a block away that just spells maybe you want them to stay at least a block away.

  17. I have a feeling that people who blog are freak magnets in general. Otherwise, you wouldn’t open yourself up to the public as such.

  18. max

    I will now tower over Stilletto and block out the sun.


  19. Taller women as a source of sunblock?

    That’s the way it was in Europe. Ah, the memories.

    Of course, if I blocked your sun, it would be, Ah, the mammaries lol

    Ok — SORRY!

  20. max

    That. Is. So. Wrong.

    Evil Girl.

  21. You know, I didn’t mean it in a vicious way but come to think of it, that could be misconstrued as evil.

  22. Max, I did the maths on your apparent height and weight difference. It concerned me slightly. heh.

    Hey Stiletto, I think you have a point about freak magnets. Although my halcyon days were a long time before the invent of blogging, I musta just had the vibe…

  23. max

    Oh do not be concerned I round off to the nearest hundred.

  24. Nancy

    Max, I am 5 foot four inches, and in Manhattan I attract the crazies too. I hate it. And it’s not about where the library is. On a Sunday morning I went to the corner deli to get coffee and paper and egg sandwiches for the kids. A man started shadowboxing with a big toothless grin not too far from my head. I decided not to double back, because then he would see where I live. Instead I scuttled into the deli and then asked one of the guys to stand watch on the corner while I get home.

  25. max

    “All I wanted was egg sandwiches!”

    I feel your pain.

  26. “Max, I did the maths on your apparent height and weight difference. It concerned me slightly.”

    My guess is 5’4 and 113 lbs.

  27. max

    It is 5′ 5 3/4″ and 117 lbs.

  28. max

    Should I be worried immediately after posting that I got email titled “drop a dress size quickly”?

    Jeez. Those spammers are vicious.

  29. Max, you are so honest. I would have just rounded that to 3/4 to six lol

  30. max

    That is where the frisky hair part comes in. Frisky hair can stand a full quarter inch.

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