I see crazy people.

I’ve come to accept it, and I’m not proud of it because I think it makes me shallow, but I’m afraid of crazy people.

I realized this last week when I had the good fortune to be near two crazy people at one time and it freaked my shit out.

First crazy person was this lady right here:

… who was pacing frantically on the sidewalk while waiting for her bus, and would walk right up to me, look me in the eyes and then pace away. Then pace back to me. And she was muttering. And I was scared.

If that wasn’t enough, there was this crazy old dude who was DANCING IN THE STREET while waiting for his bus.

I mean, really getting jiggy with it. He had like a whole routine he was doing complete with krumping, and gliding, and churning the butter. I have blocked a lot of it out, but I distinctly remember there was butter churning involved. Cars were forced to veer around him while he got down with his bad, crazy self.

I just wish my craptastic camera phone had a video mode so that you could share in the crazy, but it kind of looked something like this.

My point is this: I’m afraid of crazy people. And I am especially afraid of crazy people doing the butter churn dance.  Now if that crazy person doing the butter churn dance was also holding a pigeon?  End. Game.


  1. TC
    August 6, 2007 6:26 pm

    That is awesome – I saw Crazy Dancing Guy from across the street. I’m glad someone else found it odd enough to be camera-worthy – most people standing there seemed just fine with it.

    This was also 10 minutes after I saw another crazy guy standing in a wet spot on the sidewalk at Grant & 6th, and could not decide which scenario was worse:

    a) That he saw a wet spot and decided that standing there was the best option.

    b) That he made the wet spot and decided that standing there was the best option.

  2. Bluetail
    August 6, 2007 8:19 pm

    Some people fantacize about things that end up in Penthouse, i fantacize about crazy people.

    Once, when the 67F i was riding down Fifth Ave in Oakland stopped for passengers at DeSoto–the nearest stop to Western Psych–an older, disheveled guy got on, babbling about how he was the Second Coming of Christ. He never shut up as the seats around him emptied.

    What do you suppose would happen if the OTHER guy who thought HE was the Second Coming was already on the bus???

  3. Bob
    August 7, 2007 8:46 am

    Bluetail — reminds me of a line from the Dire Straits song “Industrial Disease.” Two men say they’re Jesus, one of ’em must be wrong.

  4. Bill
    August 7, 2007 9:05 am

    This reminds me of the sandwich board guys who walked downtown, the first was the late Robert Lansberry who couldn’t get his mail. And the second was a fellow that had a problem with the Pope and the Catholic Church. I used to ride the PATrain from McKeesport on occasion and he would get on at Braddock and ride into town with his large sandwich boards. He was apparantly a regular as the conductor seemed to know him, but I kept my distance.

  5. bucdaddy
    August 7, 2007 9:41 am

    Bill beat me to “Why can’t Lansberry get mail?” He was a downtown fixture in the day, and he had a screed the length of the constitution written on the back of his board. Unfortunately, he strode so fast through town that it was impossible to read more than the first few words. Something about getting fired from U.S. Steel or whatnot.

    If they’re not a danger to themselves, you or others, I say, celebrate your characters. There aren’t enough of them on the streets anymore. REAL characters, I mean, eccentrics, not the stone crazies obviously.

  6. efw_west
    August 7, 2007 10:53 am

    speaking of dahntahn characters, anyone remember pretzel guy? Did anyone ever see anyone actually buying and/or consuming on of those pretzels that looked to be dated from the metazoic period.

  7. Ruby Vroom
    August 7, 2007 11:18 am

    How about Bird Lady? She used to stand outside the Civic Arena and talk about how the world was going to end in 3 days. (Yes, it was the Civic Arena then, and most likely I was walking out of a really bad hair metal concert). It was always 3 days til the end of the world, no matter when you saw her. I can’t remember why we called her Bird Lady, but I bet it had something to do with pigeons.

    And, of course, that weird town cryer who used to shout the news in Market Square in that ridiculous old-timey get up. She was actually hired by the PG or someone to do that which is almost worse than doing something like that just because you’re nuts.