I have this problem with laughing by myself in public.
Several years ago I worked at a salon inside Wal-Mart. Between the hours of 6 and 8 the shop was pretty dead. I spent most evenings spinning in chairs.
One of the door greeters was constantly coming in to talk. Having a social disability she was trained in things that were appropriate to say, I was usually asked, “Oh are you busy today? Where’s Francis!?”
I’d respond, “Oh, I was earlier today, Francis had the day off.” She would shake her short crop of black hair, stare out of dazed eyes and look around for a chair to sit in. I had to come up with the things to talk about until her supervisor would come looking.
On an extremely slow day when I was standing outside watching the snow fall, she came up to me and said “John is in the wheelchair again.”
I didn’t know who John was and she walked away before I could ask.
Today I was cutting a guy’s hair when that memory came to mind. I started to laugh. The client had no idea why this was happening, he had a reasonable look of confusion on his face. He asked how long I’d been working there.
5 years ago I was buying toilet paper and gum when I noticed a box of snuggies in the checkout aisle. The image of a person wearing a snuggie being chased by a masked murderer flashed through my head. The knife wielder was pissed off about snuggies. He hated everything about them. I heard frantic hoarse breathing and saw the terrified victim, their eyes wide with horror. The snuggie would be flapping against their bare legs as they tried to avoid tripping over the front of it. I couldn’t decide which image was funnier, the snuggie runner wearing ankle boots without socks, or the person being barefoot causing the sound of foot slapping on the pavement. I was dying.
There were two people in front of, and at least three people behind me. I couldn’t control the laughter. I had tears streaming down my face. It was the funniest and most humiliating moment of my life.
I called my friend Linda and told her about it.
Christmas rolled around..
This is what a true friend does:
Bare bottom blues