A while back, the fire alarm in the library went rogue and summoned the fire dudes.
While I watched the front door, a woman arrived with her son and tried to enter the building. When I told her that she couldn't come in, she asked, "Why?"
"The fire alarm went off and they're checking the building."
"But I'll just be a minute."
"No. There's nobody allowed inside the building."
"Because they're still checking the building."
"Because the building is ON FIRE!"
Ok, the building probably wasn't on fire. But I wasn't allowed inside, so nobody else is allowed inside. Especially a woman and her kid. Was what she had to do so important that she would wander around an empty building with nobody there to help her and possibly be surrounded by flames??? And with her kid. These days nothing is dangerous. Nothing is forbidden. And that will be our downfall. Even Frankenstein's monster (yes, the movie version), an undead creature composed of decomposing flesh and with an abby normal brain, knew that fire was bad.
I don't think I've ever been comfortable with my place in the world. I've often been comfortable with my place in bed, on the barstool, and sometimes at work, but never in the world.
I worry that the Assholes have found me. To be honest, they found me a long time ago, and I did my best to keep from their view. But they seem to be back with new vigor. I don't know if people have gotten stupider or if I've become like a Dean Koontz character who inherited some hypersensitive sight that spots all the Asshole people.
A few days ago, a guy gets his bike stolen from in front of the library because he didn't lock it. While I was outside looking for clues of the crime (don't ask why; he called after the theft and asked me to look), another guy parked his bike and did not lock it. "Hey, hey, hey," I said. "Somebody might take your bike if you don't lock it to something." And I told him about the bike that was just stolen. But he assured me that he was more clever than a thief and he wrapped his cable lock around his bike to make it look like it was locked.
Don't ask me to explain this. By this time, my brain had ceased talking to me, with me looking for stolen bike clues and watching a guy wrap a cable around his bike to make it appear to be locked. My brain doesn't think I'm doing a very good job of protecting it from witnessing stupid shit. It helped me get through library school and look at the thanks I've shown it; I work at the public library where my job continually forces me to throw out all logic and submit to the whims of some of the, ummm, nicest, taxpaying good-hearted library patrons (I think my boss is reading this). So, no, my brain doesn't talk to me very much anymore.
You know, on second thought, what if this behavior is the best that the Assholes have to offer? Maybe they're doing the best that they can, and I'm just missing the message. In an Asshole World, behaving like a total asshole would be the highest compliment.
So what's my role in this? If I find myself in the presence of an Asshole, how should I behave? Is being polite to them the same as rudeness to us? How much of an asshole do I need to be back to them to show my appreciation? Because I can do it. I can be a Total Asshole. If that's what it takes. I think I'll start right now.