Somewhere in my aura is a sign with the words:
TALK TO ME. TALK TO ME. TALK TO ME.
Only people who are occasionally buried by squirrels can see this sign.
There’s a woman who comes to the Northern District Library, every day, after she digs herself out from where a squirrel buried her. She has short gray hair, a pointed nose, and a pointed chin. She wears black horn-rimmed glasses, and looks like a spinster librarian I used to see when I was a kid.
She sits in a chair, in the study area of the library, and occasionally shouts out an irrelevant sentence—well irrelevant to those around her. Her words must mean something to her . . .
“It works with children and parents.”
“My brother-in-law is sick and can’t come over Saturday.”
“Find ways to reward yourself.”
These are some of the sentences she has shouted out. Her shouts are sporadic. She may go an hour without shouting a single sentence, and then shout two sentences five or ten minutes apart. There’s no method in her madness. Between the sporadic shouting of single sentences, she sits and stares into space. Sometimes she reads a newspaper. We library patrons ignore her when she sounds off, and pretend she did not say anything. I have never seen her talking to anyone. She shouts into space. She never stays too long, and usually gets up and leaves after several intermittent shouts.
The other day I heard her say, “Don’t rape anyone here. Go to Madison Square Garden.”
Like everyone else, I ignored her.
“Did you hear me? I said don’t rape anyone here.”
I looked up from my book. She was looking at me! She was talking to me!
“If you’re going to rape anyone, then do it at Madison Square Garden. Don’t do it here. Did you hear me?”
A voice in my head said, “Don’t say anything.” I didn’t. I looked at her, but sat trembling with terror thinking, “Oh no! What is she going to do next?”
“You do all your raping at Madison Square Garden. Don’t do any here.”
Then she got up and left.
Whew! What a relief.
I don’t know her name. I never gave her a name before, but from now on she is Miss Madison.
I made an appointment to see a metaphysician. I’m not sure my health insurance will cover the cost, but I want to get that sign removed.