Randomly – Strangers

I just put my sewing machine back up, and we’re over due for a random post… so here we are. Randomly.

The sewing I was doing was mods to my partner’s mother’s bathing suit top. Moving straps and changing how they work.

I feel like that’s a metaphor somehow.

The other day I saw this man in a parking lot that raised my spine. We were leaving the grocery store and waiting to turn into the lane that would lead us onto the street. He was walking down the center of the little four way stop. As soon as I saw him I tensed up. Then I looked away, trying to figure out why he made me nervous. There was nothing strange or menacing about him, he was just a man walking, maybe bigger then most, but not even notably large. He wore a white shirt that was too loose, dark pants, dark shoes. He pulled a cigarette our from behind his ear – or what I saw as a cigarette. He walked with a sway, like he’d shake his head if he were still, but he was walking. Just a man, who made me tense, accompanied by nothing but the expansive clouds of his unhappiness, seeding the world around him in discontent.

It was very bizarre.
I don’t actually know if it was a cigarette.

There was a man yesterday who walked like a marionette, but with slightly less sway. His legs rounded and lifted, unnaturally and loose. In a way that bones aren’t normally loose. He held his arms against his chest tight, like they didn’t hinge, they did not sway or bounce or move. His face was strange. Stretched and lax and missing something very important behind the eyes. A puppet man.

Who reminds me of a woman a few weeks ago.
We were sitting on a patio outside of some shops – we were probably drinking coffee – and an old woman caught my eye. I watched her stunted shuffle from the far side of the grocery store until she reached the corner near us and turned and walked down farther and entered the shoe repair store.

She was clutching a plastic bag with a nearby shoe store label on its side, which clearly held a shoe box.

She had no facial expression at all. She barely seemed to blink. Her shoes – the ones on her feet – were beat up but in decent repair, but there were only half on her feet. The heels were folded down and her heel hung off the backs and sides as they rolled under her feet. Her left foot was only half in its shoe, but somehow they stayed together. She walked with almost a rock from one foot to the other, raising her weight enough to shove her foot ahead of her and then tilting to the other side. Her arms her pressed against her ribs, the bag clutched like it might escape.
She left the shoe repair place not long after she entered, and she looked exactly the same. From her wrongly buttoned top to the way she held the bag. Like she hadn’t moved at all.

Puppets are sometimes where you least expect them. Things don’t always present how you expect. Puppetry rarely involves dolls at all.

I have an on and off wish for old dolls. To have them. They’re creepy as hell sometimes – the good ones, always – but sometimes I want them.

I need to go to the antique shops more. There are a few good ones not far away. I want a nice old birdcage. Metal and pretty. Though ‘pretty’ is very circumstantial and open to debate, sure.

I’m going to fill it full of webs and lies.

Trap the nasties and teach them well.
Teach them what? Well that’s left to tell.


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