“Mister! Help me!” exclaimed a short, slender, blonde, mid 50’s, crazy-red-eyed woman as she ran up to me.
In another lifetime (when I was younger) I use to work for a family-oriented, retail technology store. I was “zoned” at the front door or the “greeter” as some people call it (if you have ever worked in retail you know all these terms…and if you haven’t worked retail…fuck you). It was the holiday season on a Saturday so the store was buzzing with shoppers trying to complete their wish list and get the hell out of there as fast as they could. I was doing my greeter ninja work, (because heaven forbid you let someone in the store without saying hi and letting them know about the sales going on…ask anyone who has ever worked in retail about that) very hectic as this woman came in dressed like she wasn’t on heroin screamed “Help!” The second I looked in her eyes and saw that they were glazed over and rolling in the back of her head I could tell this was going to be a great interaction.
“What can I do for you today?” I said giving her my FULL and undivided attention. I needed to know everything that was going to come out of her yellow toothed, cracked lipped, foam at the corners mouth. It was just her and I, the rest of the world was blacked out to me, I mean, how often do you get to interact with a real life drug addict? (She looked so normal from afar but damn…when she was close…you could tell she loved meth). “There’s something wrong with my smartphone!” she was yelling to a store full of well-fed, rosy-cheeked, untainted nuclear families shopping for their new technology. “May I see it?” I said completely playing into her craziness. I examined the phone to find out that the battery wasn’t in it, it had a cracked screen and it smelled like piss. I think she may have found this “phone” underneath a bridge on I-95. During my investigation of her phone she talks to herself, tells me she has been up for 3 days, and loves the band BuckCherry…which I am listening to trying not to laugh. Playing into her insanity further I said “hmm, looks fine to me but if you don’t mind can you tell me what else is going wrong here?” as she responded with “Sure can!” without skipping a beat as I smiled with delight in knowing that I was about to be told the magical story of this phone and it’s owners journey to me at the front of this store.
“It’s my god-damn boyfriend!” she tells me as I nod with my hand on my chin and arm around my chest agreeing with her “He is accessing my smartphone from jail! (Of course her boyfriend is in jail is all I thought…why wouldn’t this woman have a jailed boyfriend?) He is hacking in and making me go to BOOBIE WEBSITES!” She YELLS in the front of the store as parents hide their children’s faces from her and I’s direction. Everyone in the store is slowly but surely starting to acknowledge this interaction (and I want to believe they are as excited as I am to see what’s going to happen). “Oh No…Oh Jeez…We can’t have that…” I say as she continues “Yeah! Damn right! He is making my phone go to RIDE-MY-DICK.com or something like that and I don’t want to go there!” Continuing to YELL as parents are starting to take their families from the store “I see, yeah that’s no good, we can’t have that…go on.” I say with assurance as she goes on “I would never go to RIDE-MY-DICK.com!” She states with confidence as I reply with “Uh huh…continue…” “If anything I would go to EAT-MY-PUSSY.com! That’s the site I’d be on if I was searching for porn-o!” She YELLS some more and flails her arms around to help make her point…or lack there of. “Oh my my!” I say as sarcastically-serious as I can muster without my cheeks turning red or laughing in this crack addicts face. “Miss I am going to go talk to my manager (call the cops) and see if there is anything we can do for you, stay right here.” “That is no problems son. Let me tell you something else, don’t ever get messed up with anyone that loves cocaine.” (Where this was coming from… I have no idea…but I love it) I was about to leave this interaction but she sucked me right back in and my full and undivided attention was all on her…again. “Oh? Is that right?” I respond as she launches into another problem she has “Yeah you’re damn straight! I ain’t no coke addict but I have been known to do a “bump” every now and then…” My mind is on fire, this is gold…I never want this conversation to end. “…But these damn coke fiends…” she continues “…They just love it!” as she flails her arms some more like a prehistoric bird to make her point “I mean if I buy all the coke…shouldn’t I be able to at least BLOW A LINE?!” she flails and screams some more as I respond with “Makes sense to me…if you buy the candy bar…shouldn’t you be able to eat it?” I say definitively “My point exactly.” she agrees “I don’t want to hold you up…go see if you can fix my phone.” She dismisses me.
I thank her for her time and tell her I am going to see if there is anything I can do while rushing to the back of the store grabbing any co-worker I can. When I reach the back with some of my fellow employees I tell them the story and that this woman is still in the store. After a few minutes of rolling on the ground laughing they tell me I have to get her out before she causes anymore of a scene. I compose myself and head back to the front of the store where she is. “Ma’am” she turns to me and almost trips, lazily, over a parent with a stroller, “I checked your phone out with some of my co-workers and everything seems to be fine. The only thing I can tell you to do is go to the police and file a report if you think your boyfriend is hacking into your phone.” She stares at the phone I am holding (I think…either that or her heart stopped for a minute from overdose). When she snaps back to reality from her crack daydream she blurts out “I already been to the cops! Wanna know what they said?!” “I would LOVE to hear what they had to say” I respond. “They told me to take a nap!”
Shortly after this conversation she left and I went back to work. It’s the little things in life that make it worthwhile. I have no idea where she is today but I hope this woman is still out there making others as happy as I was to meet her. Crack woman taught me something that day that I will never forget. If you buy the blow, you should be able to do a line or 2.